Gold ring found in Swansea field declared treasure

The ring is inscribed 'prepared bee to follow me' Image copyright Swansea coroner
Image caption The outer surface of the decorative mourning ring is engraved with a trellis-style pattern

A 17th Century gold ring found by a metal-detecting enthusiast has been declared treasure.

Ron Pitman, 71, stands to earn a "finder's fee" for the discovery at Pennard, Swansea, in October 2010.

It bears the inscription "prepared bee to follow me," is 81% gold and 9% silver and dates back about300 years.

The ring was found 13cm (5in) below the surface of a field used to grow maize that had since been ploughed and rolled, Swansea Coroners Court heard.

In a report to the hearing, Dr Mark Redknapp, acting keeper of archaeology and numismatics at the National Museum and Gallery in Cardiff, said: "Such rings can be difficult to date but the decoration and sentiments in this case suggests a 17th rather than 18th Century date."

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