Archives For 17th December 2014

The Hawking Ring or Vervel

17th December 2014 — 11 Comments

Hawking rings or ‘vervels’ are rare detectorist finds. They were once attached to the leg of a bird of prey as a mark of ownership and those made of silver help in illustrating the development of hawking as an aristocratic pastime in the 17th century. A modern analogy would be a pigeon ring that bears details relating to the owner. If a bird was lost whilst hunting, then it could be identified by the vervel and thus returned to the owner. The tags were often inscribed with the owner’s name, residence or coat of arms – the latter was especially useful as not all the locals would be able to read.

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