Archaeological find of the week (24th week); lead cloth seal

NEWS | Published: 13.6.2013
The lead cloth seal. Photo: Ilari Aalto.

Lead cloth seals were a way to mark the origins of cloth in the Middle Ages and in the Early Modern period. This cloth seal that has uncommonly been preserved whole, has a depiction of a two-storey tower on its both sides. The seals bore often the arms of the town where the textile was produced. Thus it is possible that this seal and the cloth it accompanied were produced in Tournai, in modern day Belgium. Tournai was one of the centers of textile industry in the Medieval period.  Cloth seals were made in different sizes, and these differences could signal the quality of the cloth.

The seal can also be seen in the entrance hall of Aboa Vetus & Ars Nova where archaeological finds of the week are shown each week. These finds are from the archaeological excavation of summer 2013 which takes place in a large stone house of Aboa Vetus.