Diameter: 12.500 cm
Britain, Europe and Prehistory
Room 41: Europe AD 300-1100
Merovingian, 7th century AD
From Reims, Marne, France
Translucent glass shot with red spirals
Feasting and drinking were important aspects of barbarian social life and this cup would have been used as a luxury drinking vessel. Its survival intact must certainly be due to its burial in a grave.
The red streaks in the glass may be due to the deliberate use of a colouring agent. The skill of colouring glass had been lost in the north after the end of the Roman period, but was re-introduced in the late sixth or seventh century through contacts with southern Europe.
S. Marzinzik, Masterpieces: Early medieval a (London, British Museum Press, 2013)
P. Lasko, The kingdom of the Franks: nor (London, Thames and Hudson, 1971)