A slave-chain from Llyn Cerrig Bach

Contributed by National Museum Wales Cardiff

Iron slave-chain from Llyn Cerrig Bach, Anglesey; Copyright: The National Museum of Wales

The Greek geographer, Strabo, mentions the export of slaves, hunting dogs and corn from Late Iron Age Britain.This iron slave-chain was once thrown into a lake called Llyn Cerrig Bach, on Anglesey. Slavery and a trade in people was commonplace in the ancient world, an essential source of controlled labour. Strabo, a Greek geographer, tells of the export of slaves from Late Iron Age Britain to the expanding territories of the Roman Empire. It is one of many prized items found together in a waterlogged peat layer, including chariot parts, weapons, cauldrons, decorated metalwork and tools. A wooden platform probably once led out to a small island sitting in the lake. This natural, isolated place was a religious place of great significance. Here, gifts were periodically offered into the lake to the residing Gods. Perhaps itself a captured item, the removal of this slave-chain from Roman manipulation could be viewed as a powerful and symbolic act of resistence. The Druids, an influential British priestly class, may have been involved.

Comments are closed for this object

Most of the content on A History of the World is created by the contributors, who are the museums and members of the public. The views expressed are theirs and unless specifically stated are not those of the BBC or the British Museum. The BBC is not responsible for the content of any external sites referenced. In the event that you consider anything on this page to be in breach of the site’s House Rules please Flag This Object.

About this object

Click a button to explore other objects in the timeline


100BC - AD100


View more objects from people in North West Wales.

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.