This is an excavated medieval gold finger ring, dating to the 13th - 14th century. It is set with the original sapphire gemstone, enclosed within a collet setting. The shoulders have small raised quatrefoils on their outer edges. Behind this, the outer face of the shoulders is decorated with fine transverse grooves. Around the hoop is the traces of an inscription, sadly only the letter 'S' appears to have survived with the rest worn away. A comparable example has been recorded from Suffolk SF-4BD850.
The construction of the bezel is reminiscent of that on a 14th-century ring found during excavations in Winchester (Biddle 1990, 651, fig.176, no.2086) and the form of the hoop, with decoration on the shoulders, is similar to that on a 13th-century ring from Hatfield Forrest, Suffolk (1980,1202.1) and a 14th-century ring from Wells, Somerset (F.1825), both in the collections of the British Museum. A 13th or 14th-century date, therefore, seems most likely.
A superb historic ring in a worn but well-loved condition!
OBJECT: Finger Ring
DATE: c. 1250 - 1350 A.D.
MATERIAL: Gold & Sapphire
RING SIZE: 8 3/4 (US) R 1/4 (UK)
SIZE: 24mm x 21mm x 3mm (Bezel 8mm x 9mm x 6mm)
PROVENANCE: From an old Oxford collection formed in the 1990s
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