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Restoration of Iron Age Shield Reveals Elaborate Decorations

Friday, December 13, 2019

England Pocklington ShieldPOCKLINGTON, ENGLAND—Conservation of a Celtic warrior’s bronze shield discovered in an Iron Age cemetery in the north of England in 2017 has revealed its scalloped border and detailed decorations, according to an Artnet News report. The shield measures 30 inches across and is thought to have been produced between 320 and 174 B.C. by the La Tène Culture. It was found next to the skeletal remains of a man thought to have been more than 45 years of age at the time of his death. He had also been buried with an intact chariot, a brooch made of bronze and red glass, six pigs, and two horses whose bodies had been arranged to suggest they were leaping. Called “the most important British Celtic art object of the millennium” by Melanie Giles of the University of Manchester, the shield bears swirling images of mollusk shells and a raised center that was hammered into the object from the opposite side. A sword puncture hole and signs of repairs were also detected during the conservation work. Paula Ware of MAP Archaeological Practice said the damage challenges the idea that such elaborate items were made for ceremonial use alone. To read about a La Tène necropolis discovered in northern France, go to "France's Wealthy Warriors."

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