RINGS

There are some stunning gold rings surviving from Anglo-Saxon England. One of the Old English poetic synonyms for 'king' is 'ring-giver', and it may be that the two magnificent rings now in the British Museum were designed as high-status gifts, rather than being the personal possessions of King Athelwulf of Wessex or his daughter, Queen Athelswith of Mercia, whose names are inscribed on the rings.
 
This gold and sapphire ring was found in a field near York, and is now in the Yorkshire Museum. If it is Viking Age it is rare to find such a high gold content, and it could have been an heirloom, used and modified over generations. Sapphires are also very unusual. In The Traitors' Pit it (or something very like it) is worn by the Archbishop of York.