Three strap sling

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'Distributor ring' three strap system

The system of three straps joined together by a distributor ring is well documented in manuscripts and archaeological evidence, especially 10th century Hiberno-Norse finds from the Isle of Man. It seems to have been in use in Scandinavia from the late 9th century. There were three main uses:

  • to connect the reins to a horse's bridle;
  • as a decoration on a waist belt to hang a pouch;
  • as a slinging system for a sword scabbard.

Where viking scabbards used a distributor ring, Anglo-Saxon and Frankish scabbards used trefoil designs.

Further information is available on the three strap sling.

Credits: with thanks to Russell Scott.