IT’S a rare object that gives a glimpse into the history of Southampton.

A seal for the town of Southampton in 1447 has gone on show in an exhibition, depicting a ship at sea surrounded by sun, moon and stars.

Seals were used throughout the Middle Ages to authenticate legal documents. They are very fragile and often damaged over the centuries.

The Southampton seal is part of the Small Objects of Power display at the Berkshire Record Office in Reading and is on show until August.