Iron Plough Coulter from the Easton Maudit Villa

Scale rod is in imperial feet

Lead weight with iron hook


The coulter was part of a plough.  It was like a large knife which cut the sod vertically before the share cut it horizontally.  After the sod had been cut, it was turned over by mouldboards which were mounted behind the share.  The greyish object to the right of the shaft of the coulter is the top of a crucible-cast lead weight which has an iron hook flow-soldered to it.  The lead weighs 20lb and its proximity to the coulter leads the excavators to believe that it was in some way associated with it in use.  However, finds of coulters are so rare that it is impossible to say with any certainty as to our knowledge, such an object has never before been found in a similar context.

The lead was first melted in a crucible and then removed.   The iron hook, actually a typical pruning hook, was then placed against the lead, supported by a makeshift wooden framework.  Heat was then applied to the lead, causing it to melt and run in rivulets down and around the iron.