An archaeologist has found a lucky omen for England’s World Cup dreams – a 700-year-old badge emblazoned with the THREE LIONS.
Stunned Caroline Rann found the tiny copper badge while she was scouring a derelict building site in Coventry.
She was amazed to find the 5cm high badge poking out of a crevice in an ancient sandstone wall.
The 13th century badge is believed to have come from a horse’s bridle and is one of the earliest examples of England’s famous three lions emblem.
It was first used as England’s coat of arms by Henry II during the 12th century who added a third lion to the previous coat of two lions.
In 1340 the royal coat of arms was merged with France in order to back up Edward III’s claim to the French throne.
Caroline, from Warwickshire County Council’s archaeology projects, said: ”The badge was lodged between the sandstone blocks and may have fallen in to the wall while it was being built.
”This has been hidden for hundreds of years and for it to appear now has to be a sign that England will go all the way in the World Cup.
”It was a surprise, a nice surprise. The badge clearly got there accidentally, as opposed to someone hiding it.
”It is very pretty and you can see clearly the three lions on it. Hopefully it will bring the team good fortune.”
The partially corroded badge is not believed to be worth a lot of money but it will be displayed at a local museum.
It was found during excavation work on the site of a new church which was once a medieval housing estate.
The find could delay the start of work on the church as archaeologists sift through the site to find more artefacts.
Nicholas Palmer, the principal field archaeologist at the Warwickshire Museum, said: ”The three lions’ symbol was a popular motif with patriotic connotations at the time the badge was made.
”It was the Royal Arms, the Arms of the Kings of England, until 1340 and the badge was probably a decorative on a horse harness.
”This could be one of the earliest examples of the three lions being used in medieval times that we’ve seen.
”The find has certainly come at an appropriate time when the symbol is in people’s minds thanks to the world cup.”