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Enquiry from Online Galleries regarding "Pair of Viking Migration Period Zoomorphic Hawk Shaped Silver Gilt and Garnet Inlaid Geometric Brooches"
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Look at what I found on the Online Galleries website!
5th - 7th Century AD
Size: 6.5cm high, 3cm wide - 2½ ins high - 1 ins wide
Ex Irish Private collection
The inlaying of jewellery with richly coloured stones, especially garnets, was a striking feature of the migration period following the collapse of the Roman Empire. This practise combined with an obsessive use of surface ornamentation made jewellery both colourful and intricate, the interlaced lozenges resembling filigree work. From the beginning of the migration period zoomorphic decoration was a major feature on viking metalwork and animal ornament continued in an unbroken tradition until the end of the viking age. It can be seen on brooches such as these, on swords, pendants and helmets and it is remarkable in its modernity and for its teasing of human vision, often degenerating into patterns which can only be recognised by the trained eye.