Lace Token

To change the light direction, click the lightbulb button on the left of the viewer, and click and drag over the viewer with the mouse. Click the question mark button for more guidance on using the viewer.

Reflectance Transformation Imaging is particularly valuable for capturing coins and other objects that have surface decoration in low relief. Being able to move the light source makes legends, images, and wear and tear clearly visible, making it possible to investigate details of even heavily-worn objects and inscriptions.

About The Object

A commercial token dated 1794, given in lieu of payment for work in the lacemaking industry. These tokens were minted during a shortage of raw materials for official coinage, but were much abused, often locking workers into buying goods from the company shops at inflated prices. The manufacture of bobbin lace by skilled craftspeople (mostly women) was widespread across Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and parts of surrounding counties, but was effectively wiped out by mass-produced machine-made lace in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Examples of Visual Effects in RTI Viewer

Lace token with normals visualisation

Normals visualisation creates a false colour image with each pixel’s ‘surface normal’ direction mapped to a colour palette - indicating which direction each surface is facing.

Lace token with specular enhancement

Specular enhancement mathematically increases the image contrast, exaggerating the surface texture depth of the item. In the RTI viewer software, this effect is overlaid over the interactive image, meaning the light source is still moveable.



Lace Token


Lace manufacturing token


Personal Collection


University of Exeter



Sample Owner

Gary Stringer

File Creator

Gary Stringer


CC-BY Free Culture Licence

Format (1)

Reflectance Transformation Imaging file and associated views.

Format (2)

Conder Token


Metal coin