Nine Men’s Morris traveller’s pouch, made from 3mm veg-tanned leather, a suede internal pouch-come-gamesboard and a wooden toggle and games-pieces.

Early pouches (Viking period and earlier) are scant in terms of finds, and seem to have been intended to be suspended from a belt, rather than our present day method of attaching them directly to a belt – belts were more a method of carrying things, rather than to hold trousers up. It is believed they were used to carry useful possessions such as fire-starting equipment, and for games.

This pouch is an imagined item which may have been used some 1500 years ago. The leather outer protects the more delicate internal pouch, which unhooks form the toggle and can be laid out flat to use as a game board for Nine Men’s Morris. The games-pieces can then be tucked inside the pouch, fitted back inside the pouch, and the thong passes through the outer case and can be looped over a belt to be carried.

Finished in a tan stain and dubbin, the toggle is made from a variety of woods – oak, yew, beech and walnut (as are the games pieces) and the toggle is secured to the pouch by a plaited linen cord.