Byzantine Gold Pendant with Repoussé Rosette

£ 325.00

A finely worked Byzantine gold pendant hammered from a thin layer of gold. The medallion features a rosette motif, produced using the repoussé technique, with a central cabochon light blue glass inset, featuring beautiful iridescence and framed by a twisted gold wire. A line of dots encircles the rosette, finished with two rows of twisted gold wire framing the pendant. The item features two piercings, suggesting that it might have originally been an appliqué, possibly part of a more elaborate piece of jewellery or sewed onto garments. The loop to the top has been reworked in Antiquity to allow suspension. Weight: 1.15 g.

Date: Circa 6th-9th Century AD
Condition: Very fine condition, a small hole to the surface, suitable for modern wear with care.
Product Code: BS-19
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Byzantine jewellery was a continuation of Roman traditions. As in many other cultures throughout history, Byzantine jewellery acted not only as an embellishment, but most importantly as a direct display of someone’s wealth and social status. The repoussé technique, which was in use since Greek and Roman times, allows to create a pattern with metalwork by hammering the reverse to produce a design in low relief. A variety of different metals were used such as silver, bronze, copper or gold, much like this beautiful example, to embellish vessels, ornaments and jewellery. The use of wearing gold roundels as pieces of jewellery dates back to the Old Babylonian Period. Similar gold discs have been recovered at the beginning of the 1st millennium BC from north-west Iran, precisely from the archaeological site of Hasanlu, and from Cyprus. The practice was then developed during Classical and Hellenistic times, reaching Rome and consequently the Byzantine Empire.

To discover more about jewellery in the Ancient World, please visit our relevant post: Jewellery in Antiquity.

Dimensions W 2.3 cm
Region

Southern Europe

Metal

Gold

Glass

Blown Glass

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