Seal Matrix

SEAL MATRIX
Unique ID:
PUBLIC-B737E5
Awaiting validation Find awaiting validation
 Chronology
Broad period: MEDIEVAL
Period from: MEDIEVAL
Period to: MEDIEVAL
Date from: Circa AD 1300
Date to: Circa AD 1400
 Dimensions and weight
Quantity: 1
Height: 21.87 mm
Weight: 9.4 g
Diameter: 20 mm
 Materials and construction
Primary material: Copper alloy
Manufacture method: Cast
Completeness: Complete
Surface Treatment: Incised or engraved or chased
 Spatial data
'Region: Eastern (European Region) 
County or Unitary authority: Cambridgeshire (County) 
District: South Cambridgeshire (District) 
Parish or ward: Great and Little Chishill (Civil Parish) 
 Description

A complete copper-alloy seal matrix of medieval date, c.AD 1300 - 1400. The die of the matrix is circular with a tapering hexagonally faceted handle extending from the reverse. The handle terminates in an oval-shaped terminal with central perforation which would have served as a suspension loop. The die itself carries a central motif depicting three figures, one seated. This is surrounded by a legend which reads in French 'DAME AIGT MERSI DE MOI ' which translates to 'Lady (Mother) of god be merciful of me'. Unusually there appears to be no initial mark. The device likely represents the infant Christ and Mary, with a kneeling plaintiff representing the matrix's owner. The metal has a dark green patina. The seal matrix is 21.87mm tall, the die is 20mm and it weighs 9.4g.

The matrix is not a personal seal but would have been purchased already inscribed (or 'off the shelf'), and represents a seal of somebody unable to commission their own personal seal. Anonymous non-heraldic seals bearing pious motifs and sayings become particularly more common and smaller after 1300 (Harvey & McGuiness 1996, 88). It is therefore probable that this example comes from the 14th century.

Inscription: DAME AIGT MERSI DE MOI

 Personal details
Recorded by: Mr David Clarke
Identified by: Mr David Clarke
Secondary identifier: Mr Jo Ahmet
 Discovery dates
Date(s) of discovery: Sunday 7th October 2018
 Site
Pink Wellies Dig - Arable

SEAL MATRIX
Unique ID:
PUBLIC-22C9DC
Awaiting validation Find awaiting validation
 Chronology
Broad period: MEDIEVAL
Period from: MEDIEVAL
Period to: MEDIEVAL
Date from: Circa AD 1300
Date to: Circa AD 1350
 Dimensions and weight
Quantity: 1
Height: 22.63 mm
Thickness: 8.62 mm
Weight: 13.43 g
Diameter: 22.5 mm
 Materials and construction
Primary material: Copper alloy
Manufacture method: Cast
Completeness: Complete
Surface Treatment: Incised or engraved or chased
 Spatial data
Region: South East (European Region) 
County or Unitary authority: Kent (County) 
District: Tonbridge and Malling (District) 
Parish or ward: Wrotham (Civil Parish) 
 Description

A cast and engraved complete Medieval copper-alloy pedestal seal matrix likely dating to the 14th century. The matrix is conical in shape with a collared pointed handle rising from a round die, at the apex of the handle is a flat circular suspension loop. The circular die face has a central design depicting a fox holding a chicken in its jaws left (right when empressed). The inscription reads '+SIGNO MATH'I: CREDITE SIC EI'. The matrix is mottled dark grey with a hint of green.

Discussion: This matrix's inscription translates as 'Sealed with the sign of Matthew. Believe/Trust [the document beneath this seal] as you would him'. The personal non heraldic form of seal matrix was popular from the 13th to mid 14th century date. The form of this example likely places it at the latter end end of this timespan.

Class: Pedestal
Sub class: Personal
Inscription: +SIGNO MATH'I: CREDITE SIC EI

 Personal details
Recorded by: Mr David Clarke
Identified by: Mr David Clarke
 Discovery dates
Date(s) of discovery: Thursday 25th October 2018
 Site
Arable 4

Dated Era Size Type Material Found
No 1700-1800 AD 25 x 22 x 4mm Seal Matrix Copper Alloy/Glass Kent
Information

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4.81g Fob 12/12/2018 Arable 4

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