North Petherton Bowling Club - Club Logo

Club Logo

The Alfred Jewel is used as the logo for the club on both the tie and blazer badge.

The Alfred Jewel is an Anglo-Saxon ornament dating from the late 9th century, discovered in 1693. The Alfred Jewel was made in the reign of King Alfred the Great and is inscribed "AELFRED MEC HEHT GEWYRCAN", meaning "Alfred ordered me made". It is about 2½ inches (6.1 cm) long, made of filigreed gold, enclosing a highly polished piece of clear quartz "rock crystal" beneath which is set a cloisonné enamel plaque, with an image of a man, perhaps Christ, with ecclesiastical symbols. The figure "closely resembles the figure of Sight in the Fuller Brooch, but it is most commonly thought to represent Christ as Wisdom or Christ in Majesty".[1] It was at one time attached to a thin rod or stick based on the hollow socket at its base. The back is a flat gold plate engraved with "an acanthus-like plant motif".

The jewel's purpose is unknown and remains a source of speculation. It has been suggested (not based on any factual evidence) that it could have been a pointer stick (for following words when reading a book), part of a crown, or part of a brooch. It may have been one of the precious "æstels" Alfred had sent to each bishopric with a copy of his translation of Pope Gregory the Great's book Pastoral Care - no context is given in the document mentioning these, or elsewhere, but it is thought they might have been pointers. David M. Wilson sounds a note of caution as to the connection with the King, noting that "in a period when royal titles meant something, there is no royal title in the inscription".

It was discovered in 1693 at North Petherton near Bridgwater in Somerset on land owned by Sir Thomas Wroth (c. 1675–1721), where King Alfred founded a monastery. North Petherton is about 8 miles away from Athelney. The Alfred Jewel was first published in 1698 in the "Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society" and bequeathed to Oxford University by Colonel Nathaniel Palmer (c. 1661-1718) and today is in the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford, England. A replica of the jewel can be found in the church of North Petherton.