Day 3 of the NWAG Advent Calendar!

Get your stockings at the ready for Day 3 of NWAG’s Advent Calendar!

Iron shoe buckle from Shrawley Wood (© North Worcestershire Archaeology Group)

Today’s object is an iron shoe buckle dating to the later Georgian period (c.1760-1790). It’s part of a collection of objects found over several years in the vicinity of Shrawley Wood, one of the largest small-leaved lime woods in all of England – and very much part of NWAG’s ‘back yard’.

While it has definitely seen better days, it’s a nice example of the kind of large ornamental buckles that were a common feature of everyday dress in the eighteenth century. Similar examples can be seen adorning the boots and shoes of lords and labourers in contemporary engravings, including those of artists like William Hogarth and Worcestershire’s own Valentine Green.

Shoe buckles worn by Simon Lord Lovat, engraved by William Hogarth in 1746 (public domain via the Met Museum of Art)