Description: A Colchester-type IVB bronze brooch of the early Roman period, with a ridged half-circular cross-bar and a pronounced pointed keel running down the centre of the arch. The brooch has a triangular aperture in the catchplate and a patchy brown patina. The pin and spring missing and the catchplate bent, found in 1920 with other objects at the site of the new Post Office in Canterbury, Kent.
Size: 65 mm/2.5 ins. in length
Culture: Roman Britain
Date: 1st Century A.D., probably A.D. 60-80.
Provenance: Ex E.J.W. Hildyard Collection (his inventory number HCF44) and acquired as a gift from Lt. Col. O.H. North, DSO, FSA, in September 1942. Previously in the possession of Robert Barley (1945-2018).
Background: Edward J.W. Hildyard (died 1964) was an English archaeologist and collector active in the first half of the 20th Century. His family seat was Horsley Hall, a fine and extensive country house at Bishop Auckland, County Durham, now a hotel. Passionate about the past he published widely in archaeological journals from the 1930s to the 1950s, demonstrating a particular interest in Roman archaeology. He amassed an important collection of ancient coins and antiquities. His Roman, ancient Indian and British coins were auctioned by Baldwin’s Auctioneers, London, in 2008, and his collection of antiquities has been widely dispersed through leading auction houses and dealers and to museums.
Robert Barley was a leading London antiques dealer noted for his diverse and eclectic interests, who counted Mick Jagger as one of his childhood friends. He traded from a shop in Fulham High Street and the Portobello Road antiques market. He was also a leading exhibitor at many London antiques fairs. He was also an accomplished artist producing extraordinary surrealist sculptures from precious stones and deconstructed antiques.
References: Published Hildyard, E.J.W. 1946. Fibulae and other stray finds from Kentish sites, Archaeologia Cantiana, 59, p. 116-120, Plate 1. (publication available online here).
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