Aucissa-Hod Hill Sequence
The next eleven brooches have or had the axis bars of their hinged
pins housed in the rolled-over heads of their bows, except the first
whose head is rolled under.
20 sf. 224 The bow
design is simple consisting of three sunken bead-rows separated by longitudinal
flutes. The lower bow is missing and there is no ornamental head-plate,
the design beginning just short of the rolled-under head.
|A small Aucissa variant brooch
of length 40mm. The head is turned under an iron axis bar towards
the back of the bow in the British style. The flat bow tapers
from the head in a relatively shallow curve and is decorated with
three pairs of ribs with shallow flutes between. The two ribs
in each pair are joined by many small cross ribs. The decoration
is too wide for the remains of the bow and the right hand pair
of ribs is largely off the edge. The bottom of the bow is plain
and tapers to a small foot knob. The remnant of catch-plate extends
15 mm up the bow and terminates at the point where the bow begins
to curve and the decorative features begin. 1st Century AD.
The rolled-under head places this brooch is an awkward category: the
style would suit the Strip Brooch at home in the South West, but the
use of a square punch does not suit that, pointing to a time when early
examples of what became the Aucissa were so decorated before proper
beading was introduced. Which should take precedence, the Strip or the
pre-Aucissa strain, is hard to tell, perhaps the punch marks are the
prime indicators, in which case the date is before 30, otherwise it
would be from c.30 to near the end of the 1st century. The presence
of the next brooch in this collection suggests that the earlier date
is not out of place.
21 sf. 184 The bow is like that
of a conventional Aucissa: a ridge down each border and a sunken bead-row
down the centre of a curved face. The head-plate is made up of a central
flute between sunken bead-rows and stopped at each end by prominent
"eyes" consisting of a tall boss rising from an annular groove.
The upper bow is stopped at the bottom by two small cross-mouldings,
the rest being largely missing.
|An Aucissa derivative brooch
of length 47mm. The bow is typically deeply arched and relatively
slender. The head is rolled towards the face of the bow over an
iron axis bar in the continental style. The head is badly pitted
and decorative elements are difficult to discern. A lateral groove
crosses the bow in front of the hinge, below which is an obvious
moulded eye consisting of a ring and pellet on both sides. The
panel below the eyes, which sometimes carries the name Aucissa,
has a row of sunken beads on this example. A similar row of beads
between ribs decorates the centre of the bow and a deep cavetto
moulding either side of this is bordered by a plain rib. The very
edge of the bow, where it remains is beaded. Beneath these decorations,
a short length of plain bow tapers into a small forward facing
foot with integral knob. The catch-plate is reduced to a remnant
which follows the curve of the foot and extends 20 mm up the length
of the bow from the tip of the foot knob. Hattat's BOA says that
the Aucissa type flourished from the Augustan to Claudian periods
and ceased to reach Britain after 60AD. Hulls type 51. 1st
The Aucissa proper has a simple head-plate with either a bead-row on
either side of a flute, or with the bead-row next to the bow replaced
by a name, usually Aucissa although others are known. In either case,
the flute ends in semi-circular cut-outs, unlike the semi-circular projections
running part of the way round "eyes". These are never found
on Aucissas which lie at the very end of a line of development from
the middle of the 1st century B.C. (Duval 1974). The Aucissa had ceased
to be made at the time of the conquest, although survivors in use arrived
in some numbers then. No Aucissa as such has been shown to come from
an unequivocal preconquest deposit. The present brooch is earlier and
should hardly have been in use by A.D. 45.
22 sf. 333 The upper bow is broad
and stopped top and bottom by two cross-mouldings. Between these, there
is a central sunken bead-row with a flute on each side. The plain lower
bow is very narrow and plain and finished in a plain globular separately-made
|A Hod Hill variant brooch,
possibly even a Bagendon C type. The brooch is intact with a straight
pin. The head is rolled towards the face of the bow, over an iron
axis bar in the continental style. The bow is quite arched and
the condition is very poor. The top of the bow is the full width
of the head, and has two cross ribs, beneath which the bow is
decorated with three central ribs, the middle one being knurled.
Either side of these are cavetto mouldings with knurled marginal
ribs. Below this decoration are a further two cross ribs, the
bow then tapers to a small foot knob. The plain catch-plate extends
12mm up the length of the bow. 1st Century AD.
23 sf. 332 A repeat of the last
whose very small size precluded the full form of the cross-mouldings
on the upper bow.
|A small Aucissa derivative
brooch of length 26mm, with a highly arched bow. The head is rolled
towards the face of the bow, over an iron axis bar, in the continental
style. The head has two cross ribs between which there is a line
of beads in lieu of the word Aucissa. Beneath this, the tapering
bow is decorated with three central ribs, the middle rib being
knurled while the other two are plain. Outside these are shallow
flutes and plain marginal ribs. These decorative features terminate
at a cross groove, below which the bow is plain, tapering to a
bulbous foot knob which has a hooked upper surface. The back of
the catch-plate projects out 5mm at the top of its 11mm length.
The 6mm remnant of pin is of flattish section. 1st Century
Both of these, with their separately-made foot-knobs are transitional
between the Aucissa and the myriad of true Hod Hills. Both have bow
designs which are clearly derived from the earlier type, but both show
the flattening out of the bow section which is more a mark of the Hod
Hill These brooches were made before the conquest as the Hod Hill arrives
fully developed with the army of conquest.
24 sf. 58 The design is based
on the Aucissa: the upper bow has a prominent cross-cut central ridge
with another on each border, the lower bow is plain and tapers to a
simple moulded foot. The brooch was differentially tinned or silvered,
the flutes on the upper bow being left as the base metal.
|A Hod Hill derivative brooch
of length 42mm with no side knobs. The head is rolled over an
iron axis bar towards the face of the bow in the Continental style.
The lower 20mm part of the bow tapers gently to a small foot knob
and plain catch-plate, whilst the upper 20mm has two cavetto mouldings
between three tapering ribs. The marginal ribs are shallow and
plain faced whereas the median rib is more pronounced, especially
towards its lower extent, and is knurled by 14 lateral grooves,
spaced fairly evenly around 1mm in pitch. The whole of the front
of the brooch with the exception of the cavetto mouldings has
white metal plating, as do the sides of the bow. The pin is hinged
and mobile. File-marks and other manufacturing impressions indicate
that the brooch was made by casting into a longitudinal two-piece
mould and subsequently hand shaped. The white metal was then applied
to the bow and removed from the back and the cavetto mouldings
by filing. Hull's type 60. 1st Century AD.
25 sf. 111 The upper bow lacks
the side ridges of the last, but has a cross-ridge above and below.
The lower bow is missing, apart from the very top which is wider than
the upper bow.
|A small Hod Hill derivative
brooch of length 30mm. The head is rolled over an iron axis bar
towards the face of the bow in the continental style. The bow
is only slightly curved with a flat central panel between two
marginal longitudinal and two lateral ribs. The panel has a thick
notched central rib, on either side of which is a flute. The brooch
has a very wide foot with a knurled lateral rib. No traces of
side knobs are evident but the edges are very pitted. A few traces
of white metal plating are evident on the front and sides of the
bow. The catch-plate is absent except for the uppermost 2 mm which
suggests that the brooch may have been several millimetres longer
when in use. Hulls type 60. 1st Century AD.
26 sf. 548 Here, only the very
top of the upper bow is present. It has a short wing on either side
and a central flute.
|A fragment of a Hod Hill derivative
brooch. The head is rolled towards the face of the bow over an
iron axis bar in the continental style. The remnant of bow is
slightly curved with side knobs at the top The bow is decorated
with a wide flute which has a knurled rib on either side. A further
flute and knurled rib crosses the side knobs. The face of the
bow was plated with white metal. 1st Century AD.
27 sf. 301 Distorted, the surviving
part of the upper bow has the remains of two flutes.
|The top part of a Hod Hill
derivative brooch which has the head rolled towards the face of
the bow, over an iron axis bar, in the continental style. The
top of the bow broadens into very crude side knobs and there is
a broad flute, central to the pin but not the bow. On either side
of this flute is a roughly knurled rib. A smaller flute and another
rib is evident at only the widest point. 1st Century AD.
28 sf. 331 The upper bow tapers
outwards towards the bottom where there are vestiges of wings. There
are three ridges down the middle with a flaring flute on each side.
There is a cross-moulding above and below. The lower bow is lost.
|A fragment of a Hod Hill derivative
brooch with knobs at the base of the bow. The brooch is made of
very thin metal and the head is absent. The bow tapers in, then
out at a cross rib before narrowing again, then fans out again
with side knobs at the base of the fan. This middle section of
the bow is decorated with three flutes. Below this section, the
bow curves in to a cross rib and is broken near the top of the
catch-plate which is represented by a mere 3mm remnant. (Like
Hattat's 848 which has five flutes. Hull illustrates many with
three flutes. Pl 236, 3923 Pl 240, 1031 Pl 241 7528 and 877, 9932).
Hulls type 61. 1st Century AD.
29 sf. 271 The manner of holding
the pin relates this brooch to the Hod Hill family, otherwise it looks
very much like a Langton Down with the three ridges with a flute on
each side down the whole length, and the cross-moulding on the head.
The profile also suits the earlier type.
|A Hod Hill derivative brooch
of length 44mm. The head is rolled over a copper alloy axis bar
towards the face of the bow in the continental style. A deep cross
rib separates the head from the parallel sided bow, which has
no side knobs. The bow is very flat except for a curve at the
top. The bow decoration consists of two lateral ribs near the
head, below which there are three, central, plain ribs with Cavetto
mouldings and a further plain rib on either side. This decoration
continues to the bottom of the bow. There is no foot moulding
and the catch-plate, which extends 20mm up the bow, is plain.
1st Century AD.
30 sf. 337 The bow consists of
five beads and reels topped by one side of another reel Only the beads
and the ridges of the reels are tinned or silvered.
|A Hod Hill variant brooch
of length 45mm. The head is rolled towards the face, over an iron
axis bar in the continental style. The bow is decorated with five
astragals with alternate cavetto mouldings separated by cross
ribs. All but the uppermost and lower two of these cross ribs
are knurled. The catch-plate is plain and extends 19mm up the
length of the bow. The face of the brooch carries white metal
plating from the head to the foot although none is evident in
the concave mouldings. Hod Hill brooches are considered to be
1st Century AD. This is perhaps not Hull's type 60 as it
is a variant. (For similar decoration see Hattat's IARB, hinged
dolphin No. 364 and Hull pl 370). 1st Century AD.
These are all, one way or another, Hod Hills. None has yet been convincingly
published from an undoubted pre-conquest deposit and the distribution
of the type shows clearly that it had largely passed out of use when
the army moved north of the Dee-Humber line in the 70s. Therefore, brooches
24-29 should have an end-date of 70/75. However, in the case of Brooch
30, the matter is not quite so simple. Hod Hills moulded all the way
to the foot are excessively rare and the suspicion is that this is an
example of the strain of Hod Hills which, on the continent, continued
to the end of the 1st century by which time it had begun to be decorated
in enamel and showed the first signs of becoming what is a fairly wide
family of designs in the 2nd century which shows as much liking for
various patterns as the Hod Hill had done half a century before.