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Mildenhall: Coin pendant found by metal detector on Suffolk farm ‘is treasure’

PUBLISHED: 14:00 11 July 2013 | UPDATED: 14:00 11 July 2013

Mildenhall coin find

Mildenhall coin find

Archant

A rare coin pendant thought to be only one of three in East Anglia, has been declared treasure.

The pale gold Anglo Saxon shilling was found by Paul Flack who was out using a metal detector on farm land in Mildenhall in February this year, an inquest was told.

Faye Minter, senior finds recording officer with Suffolk County Council’s Archaeological Service, said the coin had been modified for usage as a pendant and dated from around 660-680AD.

She said: “The coin has been pierced and the remains of a separately cast cylindrical silver rivet are present towards one side of the flan, indicative of modification for usage as something other than a coin.

“Coins of this period were commonly either looped or pierced for suspension and worn as pendants, and it is likely that the purpose of the rivet was to secure a suspension loop.”

Ms Minter told the hearing in Bury St Edmunds that the coin’s precious metal content, combined with its modification into an object with a differing function, indicates that the object qualifies as treasure under the Treasure Act.

She told the inquest: “It is fairly unusual, although it does happen quite frequently in the Anglo Saxon period.”

Ms Minter told the inquest that three similar finds have been made in East Anglia – two in Suffolk and one in Norfolk.

Dr Peter Dean, Greater Suffolk Coroner, ruled that the coin should be considered as treasure.

Speaking outside the inquest Ms Minter said that Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery were interested in purchasing the item. Its value will be decided by an independent committee of experts.

If the item is not donated, 50% of the purchase price will go to the landowner and 50% to Paul Flack, who is the chair of Mildenhall and District Detecting Club.

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