THE latest hoard of ancient 'treasure' found in the county has been unveiled including Roman and Medieval jewellery.

Five items were declared treasure by Oxford Coroner's Court yesterday - all uncovered by metal detectorists while out combing far flung corners of the county.

One of the most significant finds was a silver Roman ring adorned with an intaglio of a small eagle and thought to date from as early as AD43.

Coroner Darren Salter described the item as 'incomplete' due to the loss of the outer part of the hoop but said the eagle could be identified with a wing outstretched and its head made to look over its back.

It was found in Leafield, near Witney, on September 16, 2017, by Frenchman Frederick Preau while he was metal detecting as part of a large rally which also found 500 other objects.

The eagle was a bird commonly associated with the Roman state with connections to their god Jupiter and it often adorned soldiers' armour and clothing, the court heard.

Oxfordshire's Finds Liaison Officer Anni Byard said: "Often the intaglio has fallen off and we are just left with the metal of the ring.

"With all the finds it is about what they are and where they come from.

"It helps us to build up a picture of the area and its past."

A rare find that also went in front of the court was a fragment of a Viking mount found by Thame resident Stephen Parlour in Souldern, near Banbury, on December 7, 2017.

Ms Byard said: "It is a very unusual find - it is not the type of object we see very often.

"Being in the south of the county, it's rare to find Viking objects here - they are more common further north."

Despite the intricacy of the design, historians have struggled to place its use but predict it was once attached to a heavy item, such as a harness, casket or piece of furniture.

Similarly the function of a fragment of carefully engraved Medieval silver is unknown but could have been part of a drinking horn.

Ms Byard said: "It's very intricate - very well made. It could have been the decorative top of a drinking horn but we are not exactly sure.

"Hopefully as more of these things come to light, we will be able to build up a better picture of what they are."

Other items included gold hoops from either the bronze or iron age and a silver gilt ring from the post medieval period.

The latest treasures come in the midst of what is the busiest time of year for metal detectorists.

Hundreds gathered in west Oxfordshire in September this year to take part in Detectival 2018, searching for finds in agricultural fields for a whole weekend.

The hot summer has meant the usual season is later this year due to the ground being too baked to dig but Ms Byard reported several finds coming through recently.

All the items declared treasure yesterday will now go in front of the Treasure Valuation Committee who will value the items.