During analysis of the National Museum of Scotland’s collections, one of us (AH) discovered a previously unrecognised mould for the production of a ‘Pictish’ penannular brooch. The context of the mould, from an undefended and isolated low-status settlement site, at Cnoc a’ Comhdhalach, North Uist (Western Isles),is unusual for an object of this type. However, recent research on similar sites in the Western Isles suggests that the organisation, control and social context of high-status metalworking in this area differs from that in the better-known areas of western Britain and Ireland, where the production of elaborate brooches is associated with high-status, often royal, sites. This note describes the new material and explores the implications of the finds.
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© 2007 Society for Medieval Archaeology