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08.05.2021

Snettisham Hoard

The Snettisham Treasure or Snettisham Treasure is a series of Iron Age discoveries of precious metals found in the Snettisham area of the English county of Norfolk from 1948 to 1973.

The treasure consists of metal, jet and over 150 gold/silver/copper alloy Torc fragments, over 70 of which form a complete Torcs, dating from d. BC. 70. Probably the most famous of the hoard item is the Great Torc of Snettisham, now held by the British Museum. Although the provenance is unknown, it is of sufficiently high quality to be considered a royal treasure of the Icenes.

A recent electron microscopic study by the British Museum revealed patterns of cutter wear, metal chemistry, and cut marks that caused many of the cutters to become fragments. One hypothesis suggests that the deliberate destruction of valuable objects was a form of vow offering.

The finds are preserved in the Norwich Castle Museum and the British Museum. The treasure was rated number 4 on the list of British archaeological finds chosen by experts at the British Museum in the 2003 BBC Television documentary, Our Top Ten Treasures, presented by Adam Hart-Davies.

Similar specimens are Torc Sedgeford, found in 1965, and Torc Newark, found in 2005, as well as six ends from the Ipswich Hoard, found from 1968-1919.

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