Hawk Bells: From European Falconry to American Trade Goods
Small bells of sheet brass or copper, often called hawk’s bells, have long been recognized as one of the items of trade brought to the New World by early European explorers and colonizers. These bells were originally used as part of falconry equipment in medieval Europe. Hawk bells were brought to the American continents by early European explorers and colonizers in the 16th – 18th centuries as trade goods. When they are found in the southern United States in early Mississippian archaeological digs, hawk bells are considered evidence for direct or indirect Mississippian contact with early European expeditions such by Hernando de Soto, Pánfilo de Naváez, or others.
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