Bronze cauldron found in a bog on the Abercairney estate, near Crieff; missing a rim piece and two handles, all of iron. The cauldron was made from a single sheet of bronze, beaten into shape. Internally and externally the oval punch marks made by the hammer are clear to see. Probably made in the first-second century CE.

Cauldrons were used in the preparation and consumption of food and drink. They could have been used to contain a variety of liquids: water, blood (including from sacrifices), oil, wine and ale and to cook a range of foods, mainly meat, either by boiling or stewing. Their presence at communal feats and at sacrificial rites helped to give them symbolic and mythological meanings. They are linked with ideas around death and regeneration.

Many cauldrons, like Abercairney, were deposited in watery places such as bogs, lochs and rivers. This was probably a ritual act whereby the cauldrons were sent to the supernatural realm as votive offerings to seek protection and aid from the gods.

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  • Accession number: 1234
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