Scabbard for a Ewart Park Bronze Sword, based on remnants of scabbards which have been found. The organic nature of a wood and leather scabbard does not lend itself to survival once buried or deposited, and on the whole we don’t have great soil conditions in the UK, and some of the best preserved finds are from Europe.

This scabbard shows work in progress, and has been used to develop skills so that further and more accurate scabbards can be made from Hazel, leather and calf-skin.

Two pieces of wood were shaped to fit the Ewart Park sword, which narrows towards the handle, and it was lined with calf-skin which still has some hair attached. Whilst modern calf-skin is different to the animals and hide used some 3000 years ago in their scabbards, it doesn’t react to the bronze.

Veg-tanned leather was wrapped around and glued in place, as evidence does not support the use of stitching in the bronze age – however there is evidence that the leather may have been cut as a narrow strip and then wound around the scabbard, spiralling towards the top. Since veg-tanned leather will slowly turn a tan colour with time, it was decided to stain the scabbard in tan, and treat it with dubbin.

The suspension loop is based on a surviving drawing on a piece of pottery, and has been left in its natural state to see how it fades over time.

Sword cast by Neil Burridge.