'To my sweet love, greetings!' - Medieval ring with romantic words found in Shropshire field

A 300-year-old medieval ring with a romantic inscription has been declared treasure.

The ring is roughly 20mm by 20mm
The ring is roughly 20mm by 20mm

The item, described as a complete gold stirrup-shaped finger ring of Medieval date (AD 1200-1300), was discovered by metal detectorist Darren Morrison in a field in Frodesley, near Church Stretton. It weighed 1.4g and is around 20mm by 20mm.

A treasure inquest hearing at Shirehall was told the ring is composed of a distorted annular band with a protruding triangular bezel. The bezel is set with a small convex circular (cabochon) gem setting, which is green in colour. The shoulders of the finger ring expand out to the rectangular band with three incised transverse lines on one side, and two on the opposing side.

The inner surface of the hoop in inscribed with an Anglo-Norman inscription in Roman capitals. An expert, Dr Malcolm Jones, translated the inscription to read: "To my sweet love, greetings! I request that what he promised me he remember for God's sake".

It was heard that such rings were in use from the mid-12th century to the 15th century, but were more common in the first half of this period.

John Ellery, senior coroner for Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin, said that the object contains a minimum of 10 per cent precious metal and that, as well as its age, qualifies it as treasure under the Treasure Act 1996.

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