Egyptian Coptic Bone Spindle Whorl


A hemispherical bone Coptic spindle whorl, pierced through the centre. Decorated with a geometric pattern of concentric circles. The base is flattened.

Date: Circa 5th - 10th Century AD
Period: Coptic Period
Condition: Excellent


Spindle whorls were a useful accessory used in combination with the spindle; coarse wool or other fibres would have been twisted around the spindle then spun and left to drop pulling the fibres and creating yarn. The whorl would have been attached to the spindle aiding the handler to control the speed of the process. The weight of a whorl would determine the force applied while the diameter dictated the amount of twists performed during one spin. This technique for spinning dated from the Iron Age to the early post-medieval periods. Across civilisations and ages, spindle whorls have been created out of many different materials: amber, antler, ceramic, coral, bone, several different metals, wood and glass.

Weight 1.2 g
Dimensions L 1.3 x W 1.3 cm



Reference: For a similar item, please see For Similar: The Metropolitan Museum, Item 23.2.24

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