Photograph of ET Leeds
Archives and Artefacts
Photograph of ET Leeds beside a trench
Exploring the Past through the Work of E.T. Leeds and A2A
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ANGLO-SAXON OXFORDSHIRE

ANGLO-SAXON BURIALS AT DYKE HILLS

A number of Anglo-Saxon burials were discovered at Dyke Hills in Dorchester-on-Thames by a farmer in 1871 revealing an important early Anglo-Saxon burial site.

Finds from grave 1 Finds from grave 2
Finds from early Anglo-Saxon male (grave 1-left) and female (grave 2-right) burials

Two graves excavated from Dyke Hills are particularly interesting due to their very early grave finds. A male burial (grave 1) contained an elaborate belt-set and antler bead. The bead may have been a sword ornament but the belt fittings were of a type that first appeared in the late Roman period. The second grave was a female burial (grave 2) which contained an early cruciform brooch, that may have been a direct import from the continent, and a buckle of a later Roman type. These finds suggest settlers of Germanic origin lived in the area during the first half of the fifth century.

Finds from grave 3
Finds from female burial (grave 3)

A second female burial (grave 3) found at Dyke Hills also contained numerous bracelets, a key and bronze coins, all of a late Roman type, together with applied brooches of an early Anglo-Saxon type.

Professor George Rolleston and A.H. Cooks recorded these finds which are now held by the Ashmolean Museum. Scattered finds from this site have continued to appear.

REFERENCES:

J.R. Kirk and E.T. Leeds (1952-3) "Three Early Saxon Graves from Dorchester, Oxon.", Oxoniensia XVII-XVIII, p63-76.

A. MacGregor and E. Bolick (1993) Summary Catalogue of the Anglo-Saxon Collections (Non- Ferrous Metals), BAR British Series 230.

Copyright University of Oxford, Ashmolean Museum, 2005. Last updated:  About this Website
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