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Leather satchel

Fragments of leather satchel found at Loch Glashan, Scotland, medieval

Fragments of leather satchel found at Loch Glashan, Scotland, medieval

Among the waterlogged leather fragments from the excavation of Loch Glashan crannog were what initially resembled parts of a jerkin (jacket). In 2002 new research made it possible to re-examine the leather where it became clear that the fragments were actually parts of the of the oldest leather satchel known from the British Isles, dating from the 6th-8th century.

The shape of each fragment, along with the position of the stitches and the creases in the leather, suggest that the satchel may have held a book. Manuscripts and images show that clerics did use satchels to carry and store religious books and relics so it is very possible that this satchel from Loch Glashan was used for this purpose.

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