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To celebrate Vikings Live, we have replaced our Roman alphabet with the runic alphabet used by the Vikings, the Scandinavian ‘Younger Futhark’. The ‘Younger Futhark’ has only 16 letters, so we have used some of the runic letters more than once or combined two runes for one Roman letter.

For an excellent introduction to runes, we recommend Martin Findell’s book published by British Museum Press.

More information about how we have ‘runified’ this site

 

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reliquary-cross

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    1968,1001.1

  • Description

    Reliquary cross; silver; with hinged back opening to reveal three compartments; the front engraved with the scene of Christ crucified and 'The Wounds of Christ' and inscription; on the back, the Instruments of the Passion and a monogram.

  • Date

    • 17thC
  • Production place

  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 101 millimetres (with suspension loop)
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Type

        inscription
      • Inscription Position

        front
      • Inscription Content

        INRI
      • Inscription Type

        sacred monogram
      • Inscription Position

        back
      • Inscription Content

        IHS
      • Inscription Type

        maker's mark
      • Inscription Position

        side
      • Inscription Content

        MC
  • Curator's comments

    Compare very similar cross dated 1638 in National Museum of Ireland, Dublin: illustrated in R O'Floinn, Franciscan Faith, sacred art in Ireland, Dublin 2011, fig.32 p. 62. That example has a Franciscan friar etched into it at the foot of the cross, and a wooden cross inside the reliquary with a Spanish prayer invoking Mother Luisa de Carrion of the Poor Clares, who died two years earlier in 1636.BM one has nothing inside. Very similar in etching style to the Dublin reliquary however. R. O' Floinn comments that "the rendering of the figure and the engraved feathering of the cross-head is a feature found in Irish engraving of the period."

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  • Condition

    The locking nut is missing.

  • Subjects

  • Associated names

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date

    1968

  • Department

    Britain, Europe and Prehistory

  • Registration number

    1968,1001.1

Reliquary cross; silver; with hinged back opening to reveal three compartments; the front engraved with the scene of Christ crucified and 'The Wounds of Christ' and inscription; on the back, the Instruments of the Passion and a monogram.

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Object reference number: MCB1533

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