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A New Book on Anglo-Saxon Vessel Glass

A review of Rose Bradley's recent book, Glass Vessels of Anglo-Saxon England, c. AD 650-1100

The glass specialist Rose Broadley has kindly provided SHARP with a copy of her new book, ‘The Glass Vessels of Anglo-Saxon England’. The book, which is published by Oxbow Books, is a national survey of Anglo-Saxon vessel glass. It covers 2847 fragments of glass dating from c. 650-1100, from 23 settlement sites, including Sedgeford. Sedgeford is also one of the seven detailed case studies, for which the distribution of vessel glass across excavation areas is analysed. Vessel glass was much less common in Anglo-Saxon England than in Roman or medieval Britain, and is usually an indicator of wealth and status. Most Anglo-Saxon vessel glass derives from trading settlements, monasteries and rural estate centres, mainly on or near the east and south coasts. The Boneyard and Chalk Pit Field excavations have produced 18 Anglo-Saxon vessel glass fragments, some of which are decorated with reticella, or applied trails in contrasting colours.

This book provides a thorough survey of the consumption of vessel glass in Anglo-Saxon England and is illustrated with numerous colour photographs and distribution/density maps. Its exhaustive analysis of glass vessel forms, colour and decoration will be of interest to anyone who would like to learn more about Anglo-Saxon material culture. Link to the book on the Oxbow books website:


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