Crotal bell, coins and even a token

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Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Oxgirl36 » Mon Aug 12, 2019 6:24 pm

Last day of my holiday break was today so made the most of the day and had a few hours on an old field that I’ve only visited a few times but has just been harvested.

I learnt very quickly that I hate stubble - even just wheat stubble. It’s a git to get the coil through and swinging a foot off the ground is both tiring and a waste of time ;;z

So I didn’t.

Instead I did the wide field border. This has sporadically produced good finds on a couple of days and rubbish on others. Stuff comes out looking beautiful or completely toasted too.

Anyway first few signals in a previously interesting hot spot area (near the public footpath that runs through it) resulted in two toasted Georgian coins and a part of an interesting lead token or seal. On studying the field I noticed that the oblong had a weird addition that gave the field a funny shape. So I went to investigate. There’s a pond and I noticed stones and some pottery in this area - looked like 16th century or earlier local green stuff. I stopped to check my email and turned round when I finished to hear the coil give a loud 89 signal. There was a slight iron edge to it but it was very diggable anyway. About 3” down I was shocked to see a lovely decorated and whole crotal bell. I haven’t had one in ages so it plastered a big smile on my face :D . On clean up it’s a beautiful clear ringer too, with both decoration near the loop at the top, and at the bottom. Looks like the hammer type makers mark has been filed away though - very weird. You can just see the feint outline. Very similar to this one on the Finds database https://finds.org.uk/database/artefacts ... /id/954881
77463734-EF6C-4787-9212-FCEB166BB61B.jpeg
3AE386ED-E903-4A0B-BA1E-9425D6FD8B32.jpeg
Inspired by the crotal bell the next feint signal I heard about 5 foot away got dug with gusto. A feint sound with 80 on the screen led to a very worn and somewhat tatty hammy. That was the last thing I was expecting on this field! Love an ID on it if there is any chance :-* Thinking a Lizzie?

After digging some rubbish and lots of lead I did a big loop of the area and ended up only a few feet from the other two finds with another decent but feint signal, registering 89 on the screen. Out popped a jeton - a pierced Hans Krauwinckel II Nuremberg type one https://en.numista.com/catalogue/pieces42705.html
8ADEE6D2-CF22-4905-BC89-5358CA3E4B2C.jpeg
21E23FED-A629-4776-BFF6-BBCE32923351.jpeg
Only did 3 hours before I had to do child taxi duties :( ;;z

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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Bargeman » Mon Aug 12, 2019 6:42 pm

Nice Crotal bell, we all like a nice ringer ::g



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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Bradrick » Mon Aug 12, 2019 6:50 pm

Brilliant Cath... you made the most of your day,and a gorgeous crotal bell too! ::g
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by sweepstick47 » Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:02 pm

Nicely done Cath ::g Always nice to get a decorated complete Crotal Bell and it's a humdinger of a ringer - one more for the collection ::g Regards ss47
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by lonecoiler » Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:27 pm

Lovely bell and a really good write up. 10 on 10 ::g :;@
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by littleboot » Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:30 pm

Love the bell...a really smart one and nothing beats the first ring. ::g That area seems the one to micro-search.
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by bob79 » Mon Aug 12, 2019 8:10 pm

Lovely Crotal bell Cath, well done you ::g

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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Kritika » Mon Aug 12, 2019 8:41 pm

Love that Crotal bell, well done ::g
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Oxgirl36 » Mon Aug 12, 2019 9:02 pm

littleboot wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:30 pm
Love the bell...a really smart one and nothing beats the first ring. ::g That area seems the one to micro-search.
I will when there’s nothing else to detect :D .

The combines are booked for my best fields this week so everything else will be ignored till they’ve been reseeded. Least that's the plan. I’ve never been on them yet but I know one has a DMV (the rest is scheduled) and some incredible finds have been found there before. It was ploughed before being seeded so I’m hoping it’ll be good to me.

I could be very disappointed though x;
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by f8met » Tue Aug 13, 2019 8:50 am

Lead token looks like it could be a windmill token. I have one with a windmill one side and a bucket the other.
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by shaggybfc » Tue Aug 13, 2019 9:10 am

I love the bell ::g - I'm yet to find a complete one - I have lots of broken bits in the collection though... I know what you mean about the wheat / barley stubble, it's hard work indeed. I tend to follow the tractor tracks when the arm gets tired.
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Oxgirl36 » Tue Aug 13, 2019 9:12 am

f8met wrote:
Tue Aug 13, 2019 8:50 am
Lead token looks like it could be a windmill token. I have one with a windmill one side and a bucket the other.
That’s interesting - I’ll going to check it out more closely ::g
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by littleboot » Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:20 am

Well lots of good luck for your new permissions! I know we all build ourselves up in anticipation for land becoming available, but that is a big part of the fun. I can sometimes be a bit anti-climatic and sometimes it can surpass my wildest expectations. Often its inbetween....it wouldn't be interesting for me if it wasn't so unpredictable. Sounds like there is plenty of history there....it will ultimately come down to what the ground is like and how deep things have sunk.

Good shout by f8met on the windmill token. It fits well with the other finds nearby. Is it likely, given the topography, that a windmill was on that bit of land or nearby? I once saw an archived map and was stunned by just how many mills were dotted about. Yet when one stops to think about it one shouldn't be surprised. Staff of Life and all that and people wouldn't travel far back then. Our hamlet had 12 houses and 4 bakehouses in 1820. There must have been a postmill somewhere around here.
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by f8met » Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:16 am

One source I have found for things like windmills is the British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/ site with parish histories. One of the Cambridge club members thought the windmill opposite his permission was fairly modern but the history shows it was there at least as early as 1300.

Here is the set for Oxfordshire, organised by the hundreds. Just look up the parish and the ones surrounding it.

https://www.british-history.ac.uk/searc ... /vch--oxon
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Oxgirl36 » Tue Aug 13, 2019 12:16 pm

f8met wrote:
Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:16 am
One source I have found for things like windmills is the British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/ site with parish histories. One of the Cambridge club members thought the windmill opposite his permission was fairly modern but the history shows it was there at least as early as 1300.

Here is the set for Oxfordshire, organised by the hundreds. Just look up the parish and the ones surrounding it.

https://www.british-history.ac.uk/searc ... /vch--oxon
Great link ::g I’m so addicted to this hobby though that I actually have a copy of my hundred and another of the history of the county too (volume 1) - I’m still trying to find a reasonably priced copy of version 2 rl; . I like books, what can I say =))

In fact, from the field I found this token I can actually see the site where the local windmill was. There’s another 1 about a mile away in the other direction too :D Looks, by it’s size, like a post medieval one from what I’ve since found out following your great tip f8met - you’ve been brilliant ::g
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Dave The Slave » Tue Aug 13, 2019 2:17 pm

Good day out there, Cath. Would be happy with those 4 items.
Ref the Crotal bell.
Would a Crotal bell have been an expensive item back then, a days wage, several days ?
Deliberate removal of identifying mark brings up some possibilities;
Firstly just a random loss or
perhaps sheep rustling or maybe a sheep just wandered into a neighbouring field.
Either way removal of makers mark is the loss of an identifying feature, which has lasted on this bell for perhaps 300 + years.
Fascinating History.
Cheers, ::g
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Oxgirl36 » Tue Aug 13, 2019 4:17 pm

I guess it could have been hiding the evidence in some way :-O . The patina is reduced on that area so I’m guessing it was some time after it was produced.

The area is pretty obvious in these photos ...
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Ladybird66 » Tue Aug 13, 2019 4:48 pm

Fantastic bell you found Cath. I’ve only ever found the top of one :(( they don’t seem to have been used much around here. But, I do have a collection of Cow Horn Protectors :D

Well found. Looks like you’re going to be busy, busy, busy now the crops are combining off. Power to your elbow, here’s to some great finds ::g

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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Bargeman » Tue Aug 13, 2019 5:59 pm

Well I am going to fly in the face of popular opinion, and say right out, that that looks like a casting flaw, and does not appear to have been filed! There I've said it rl;

There does not appear to be any file marks on the bell, and a couple of the patern lines finish before they should on one side. I really don't think there is anything sinister going on here, just an unusual find, and all the better for it ::g



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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by ashjacko » Tue Aug 13, 2019 7:17 pm

I hate stubble to but well worth it for finds like that! That crotal bell is gorgeous! It's very high on my bucket list.

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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Oxgirl36 » Tue Aug 13, 2019 7:39 pm

Bargeman wrote:
Tue Aug 13, 2019 5:59 pm
Well I am going to fly in the face of popular opinion, and say right out, that that looks like a casting flaw, and does not appear to have been filed! There I've said it rl;

There does not appear to be any file marks on the bell, and a couple of the patern lines finish before they should on one side. I really don't think there is anything sinister going on here, just an unusual find, and all the better for it ::g



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That’s fine by me :-* it certainly also has a flaw in one of the breathe holes too and a weak point by the loop too ::g
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by f8met » Wed Aug 14, 2019 12:19 am

I suppose I should feel guilty... 13 ringers so far :D :D ::g I hang one on the Christmas tree every year. I haven't polished any which I have seen here.

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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by Saffron » Wed Aug 14, 2019 1:07 am

Some very nice finds there Cath, well done.

Interesting about the "missing" makers mark on crotal bell. I see no point it removing it, if the sheep had been stolen (and not killed for meat) you would remove the bell which might have been used as evidence. If you just filed off the makers mark and the sheep was found the original owner would say "look at that crotal bell, its exactly the same size, shape and design as mine and you can even see where the makers mark has been removed" .... not very clever from the thieves view point.

So I will go with Bargeman and say casting flaw, especially in the view of the other faults.

f8met that is a cracking ID with that windmill design lead token. Obvious now but I certainly did not spot it until I saw the post and it sounds as if Cath was the same. As littleboot says there were an amazing number of mills around, athough a lot we water powered a fair number would have been wind powered.

On the other hand f8met you are plain greedy with that number of crotal bell ringers!. I have a few crotal bells but never found a ringer and its on my wish list (and I suspect many other detectorists too)

Ladybird re your comment about the crotal bell "they don’t seem to have been used much around here", it has been mentioned on here few times in the past that they are localised and fairly common in some areas (as f8met proves!) and rare in others. I have found most of mine on digs away from my normal area.

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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by f8met » Wed Aug 14, 2019 8:02 am

Someone in my club has been 30 years without finding a complete crotal bell. I took him on my permission last year and he found a very near complete one which did ring and I also found one in the same field the same day. I guess it does depend on the land use at the time.
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Re: Crotal bell, coins and even a token

Post by fred » Wed Aug 14, 2019 10:04 am

That is a cracker of a crotal bell. ::g
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