Northern Europe, Vikings or Viking Rus, ca. 9th century to 11th century CE. An elegant, rare silver pectoral of a crescent or lunate form, with stamped decorations on both sides, found in a hoard in Eastern Europe. Double spirals at each terminal form clasps. The item was made by hammering a bar of silver into shape. The front-facing side is decorated with a dense series of repeated spade-shaped and hourglass-shaped stamps, each containing tiny raised dots; impressed dots are also spaced evenly up the sides and between the stamps. Size: 7.05" W x 7" H (17.9 cm x 17.8 cm); 76.3 grams; 98.5% silver
Vikings hoarded precious metals, especially silver, to a great degree; for example, in Viking Scotland alone, we know of thirty-one Viking age hoards containing silver - and those are just the ones we know about - while Viking Ireland has nearly double that! An incredible piece of wearable artwork and displayed wealth, which in the volatile Viking period was often in the form of jewelry made from precious metals, this would have belonged to one of the highest members of society.
Provenance: private New York, New York, USA collection
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Dark patina on surface.