#8220;I put it in my finds bag and thought no more about it until I washed it in the sink later on. I could see the detail – the eagle’s head and the scrolls – was unlike anything I’d ever seen and I realised immediately it must be something of importance.#8221;
Tim Moody, from Charney Basset, near Wantage, discovered the ancient measuring instrument – similar to a pair of compasses – about 10 inches beneath the surface of an undisclosed farmer#8217;s field, somewhere in the county.
The dividers are set to go on display at the Oxfordshire Museum in Woodstock as part of a new exhibition celebrating archaeological objects discovered by the general public, which will open on September 23.
Finds Liaison Officer for Oxfordshire Museum Service, Anni Byard, said: #8220;Roman dividers are uncommon objects and, of those known, the vast majority are plain, undecorated utilitarian objects of early Roman date.
A RARE Roman artefact, described by a metal detectorist as the #8216;find of his life#8217;, was initially mistaken for a tent peg.