A Bronze Age Sword from the River Severn at Worcester

This Bronze Age leaf-shaped sword was discovered in Worcester in 1902 whilst dredging the River Severn.

It was originally thought to be Roman and is often described as such in early museum records and catalogues. It measures 588mm in length and at its maximum the blade measures 43mm in width. The end of the tang is broken. Worcester City Museum acquired the sword in 1906.

Other Bronze Age metalwork has also been discovered following dredging along the river at Worcester. A socketed bronze palstave axe was discovered in 1840 and a spearhead in 1844. The placing of, often broken, metalwork into watery and marshy places in the Bronze Age is well known and is considered to have votive significance. It’s possible that these metalwork depositions could be seen as part of that tradition.

Other Bronze Age metalwork finds from the city include socketed bronze axes from the Gas Works at Tolladine Road and from the base of Castle Hill (which was excavated in the 1820s).

A second Bronze Age sword is also known from Worcestershire. It was found at Broadway and is currently in the collections of the British Museum.

Archenfield Archaeology ltd, 58 42-52 Diglis Road, Worcester: desk-based archaeological and buildings assessment

Dinn, J. An outline resource assessment and research framework for the archaeology of Worcester. Worcester City Council, 2007

Smith, C.N.S. A Catalogue of the Prehistoric Finds From Worcestershire in Transactions of Worcestershire Archaeological Society Volume 34, 1957


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.