A key decorated in Scandinavina style found near Boughton, Nottinghamshire. (c) Portable Antiquities Scheme, CC BY-SA 4.0
Decorated Key (DENO-4259B3)
A key decorated in Scandinavian style found near Boughton, Nottinghamshire
This cast copper-alloy key handle is decorated with Scandinavian-influenced designs reminiscent of the Urnes style of Viking art. Keys were not only practical items but also symbols of status. Women often carried the keys to the family’s chests of valuables. They also are often buried with keys, representing their authority in the household. See also the blog post on keys in the Viking Age.