The Staffordshire hoard

Some exquisite enamelled gold fittings from weapons collected after a battle near here, a few days back. …

I just picked up a book on the subject at the library. It opened on a page showing an inscribed amulet. I'd actually seen the piece in the local museum.

This is what the book says:
"A strip of gold bearing an inscription from the Vulgate…

…the lettering dates fromthe 7th or early 8thCenturies. The relatively crude lettering may have been the work of someone more used o writing on…

…the suitably warlike inscription, mis-spelt in places is from the Book of Numbers 10:35 or Psalm 68:1 and reads

Surge domine et dispentur [dissipentur] inimici tui et fugent [fugiant] qui oderunt te a facie tua."

It looks more like prison tattooing than the beautifully handcrafted jewllery it is with. Typical of the sort of person who would be in the army in any age in any culture.

What is interesting apart from dating the knowledge base of fairly ignorant people, is the use of English betrayed by the mispelling. It is mis spelled in a manner that a modern English speaker would do so.

Not bad for a <rich?> lout who died 15 hundred years ago.


One thought on “The Staffordshire hoard

  1. Had to write that in an hurry. I just bought an old P4 box from a market stall and forgot to go and fetch it.I just caught him in time…I suppose someone in another century would have found it wrapped and buried, waiting for me if…Or perhaps not.I wonder, as he lay there bleeding his last, if he was thinking about the inscription or about me being glad he died for me.Both probably.He got both wrong after all.But "it's the thought that counts" is what I always say, when someone dies for me.

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