The Bann Disc


The Bann Disc is one of the most outstanding pieces of metalwork surviving from the Irish Iron Age.




In March 1939 while the dredging of the River Bann was being carried out just south of Coleraine, a decorated bronze disc was found near Loughan Island, Co. Derry just above Loughan Graveyard in the sand and gravel near the east bank of the river. The small bronze disc is slightly convex and measures just 10.6 cm across. The decoration consists of a swirling triskele surrounding a circle and within a circle and the design is executed with a number of trumpet-shaped curves with three stylised bird heads. The decoration is slightly raised from the surface of the disc and was created through the painstaking process of carefully cutting down the background to leave the lines in low relief. The disc has three perforations for suspension with a surviving loop of bronze in one. On stylistic grounds it is dated to the first century AD

Further Reading
Barry Raftery 1984. La Tène in Ireland. Problems of Origin and Chronology. Marburg, 268-75.

 
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