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Personal objects and personal identity in the Iron Age: the case of the earliest brooches.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter in a book

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDress and Society: Contributions from Archaeology
EditorsT.F. Martin, R. Weetch
Publisher or commissioning bodyOxbow Books
DateAccepted/In press - Mar 2016
DatePublished (current) - 2017


In the mid fifth century BC a new type of object appeared in Britain: the brooch. From this time on brooches are consistently part of the panoply of metal objects recovered from British sites. From the fifth to second centuries BC they are found in burials, in settlement sites in occupation deposits and pits, and as isolated finds in the landscape. They are small objects that could be clasped to a garment and are shaped in repeated forms although each example is unique and individually crafted. The similarity of form between each brooch, their associations with people through use and deposition, their small personal size and their broad distribution makes them an ideal subject through which to consider and compare their role in dress, personal presentation and, by extension, identity in this period.


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