A talk by Stephen Dean, County Archaeologist for Staffordshire. The Staffordshire Hoard is quite simply a singular assemblage of Anglo-Saxon treasure the like of which has never before been seen. The material represents the single largest haul of Anglo-Saxon treasure from England and its ‘biased’ nature (being predominantly martial) throws up some interesting questions as to the purpose of gold in the Anglo-Saxon world and what this unusual hoard might represent. This lecture then will focus initially upon the initial discovery of the hoard in July 2009 and the work of the metal detectorist, Staffordshire County Council archaeologists and a team from Birmingham Archaeology to recover the material while searching for clues as to why it was placed here. Following on from this some of the key pieces and groups such as the helmet, sword furniture and the folded cross will be introduced in greater detail before the talk ends with a discussion on some of the theories put forward to explain its deposition in a field to the south of the Watling Street.
A lecture in the Salisbury Museum Archaeology Lectures (SMAL) series. SMAL lectures are held on the second Tuesday of each month from September to April.