A splendid buckle like this would have been a costly item that not everyone could have afforded. It may originally have formed part of a larger set of adornments, with a matching counter plate. The buckle is decorated with fabulous beaked snakes in an interlace pattern, a popular motif on jewellery of the late sixth and early seventh centuries. The large gold buckle from Sutton Hoo, for instance, is also decorated with intertwined snakes and it has been suggested that the interlace represents an attempt to counter negative forces by literally tying them up. Although we don't know where this buckle came from, it may well have been found in a grave, buried with its owner.