Sutton Hoo before Raedwald
Chance discoveries often reveal the existence of previ
ously unknown sites. But they can also happen on famous and much explored sites, sometimes transforming how we think about them. In November
7986 a local farmer harrowing a field about half a kilometre north of the royal cemetery at Sutton Hoo turned up three pieces of a shallow brass bucket about the size of a large casserole dish. The base was missing and only half the handle was found, but the overall preservation was good, and it could be seen that the vessel was decorated. There was an inscription in bad Greek around the top: 'Use this in good health, Master Count, for many happy years. I
Beneath was a frieze of hunters and their prey executed with punches and chisels on the hammered metal. Now excavations in advance of the new Visitor Centre have revealed another cemetery, and the start of a whole new chapter in the Sutton Hoo story.
Photo: British Museum.
Source: John Newman, Field Officer, Archaeological Service,
Suffolk County Council