Lynn Museum is the home of the Bronze Age timber circle known as Seahenge (featured in an earlier column) and we actively collect objects to complement it. This ring was found in Fincham in 2013 by metal detectorists and it was purchased by the museum with the generous help of the Friends of King’s Lynn Museums group.
Norfolk has more treasure finds than anywhere else in the UK and finds like this reflect the importance of northern East Anglian metalwork during the Bronze Age, known for both its quality and quantity.
Dating from the Middle Bronze Age (3000-3600 years ago), the ring is formed of three strips of gold. The strips were probably soldered together, but now separate at several points, and each one has slightly raised edges inside. It is known as a pennanular ring because a small part of the circumference is missing. Rings like this are a well-known Middle Bronze Age artefact type, often found as a set of linked rings. Their exact function remains unknown, but they were probably used as jewellery for the nose, ears, hair, or body.
The ring is not currently on display, but you can see the famous Seahenge and learn more about the Bronze Age in the Seahenge gallery.