Snettisham has sustained a settlement since ancient times. This is borne out by the quality of the artefacts discovered here. Valued and rare finds, located on rising ground in parts of Snettisham, confirm that the area has been home to older civiliations from up to at least 2,000 years ago.
Approximately 180 gold torcs (75 complete) have been discovered at Snettisham
since the first was uncovered in November 1948. Subsequent discoveries
of gold, silver and bronze items at the site have made this this the biggest
collection of Iron Age Celtic metalwork ever discovered in the British Isles
and the Treasure is unique in western Europe. Over the years, Snettisham
discoveries have included 14 torc
hoards (15 kilograms of gold and 20 kilograms of
silver. Hoard E was discovered in 1950, the lower nest of gold torcs was comprised of one complete gold torc, and part of a second gold
torc with its terminals secured to a damaged bangle, a worn gold stater coin
was found trapped inside one of the terminals.
Expert opinion and other supporting evidence date these beautiful finds from the first century BC. It is thought that these torcs were probably buried for security by the owners' of the torcs themselves at the time the country was invaded. In another part of the parish traces of Roman pottery was also unearthed. The Snettisham Hoard, as these finds are referred to, includes many Iron Age precious metal discoveries.
The Snettisham Great Torc is thought to be from the late first century BC. It is regarded as an exceptional example of insular British art. A torc (as pictured above) is an ornament worn around the neck believed to have been popular adornments in the first century BC.
Torcs of the tubular variety are extremely rare and lighter than many other types. This torc separates and was meant to be worn from time to time, possibly during tribal ceremonies.