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shoulder-clasp

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    1939,1010.4

  • Description

    One half of gold shoulder-clasp plate (other half 1939,1010.4.a). Curved in section, with loops for attachment underneath and a hinge down the straight side. A loop and chain is attached at the top of the plate, fixed to a plain gold pin with an animal head terminal in filigree. The whole consists of a rectangular plate with rounded end. The rectangular plate contains a central panel of fifteen cloisonné cells filled alternately with millefiori and garnets, and interspersed with slightly larger plain garnet cells. Each side of the rectangle is decorated with a separate panel of zoomorphic interlace in garnet cloisonné, some of the beasts having millefiori eyes. The rounded end contains a pair of interlinked boars in garnet work, their heads down and their curving backs forming the rounded end of the clasp. Their hip-joints are filled with millefiori, and the spaces between their legs are filled with gold filigree in a snake-like pattern. The cells are underlaid with stamped gold foil.

    More 

  • School/style

  • Culture/period

  • Date

    • late 6thC-early 7thC (c. AD 560/70-610)
  • Findspot

  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Length: 12.7 centimetres (incl 4a)
    • Width: 5.4 centimetres
    • Length: 5.1 centimetres (chain)
    • Length: 5.7 centimetres (pin)
    • Weight: 95.96 grammes (excluding 4a)
    • Thickness: 0.5 centimetres
  • Curator's comments

    Published:

    N. Adams, ‘Rethinking the Sutton Hoo shoulder clasps and armour’, in: Intelligible Beauty recent research on Byzantine jewellery, ed. C. Entwistle and N. Adams (London, British Museum Press), pp. 83–112

  • Bibliography

    • Tait 1976 197 bibliographic details
    • Tait 1986a 242 bibliographic details
    • Speake 1980 3 bibliographic details
    • Bruce-Mitford 1978 Fig.386 bibliographic details
    • Marzinzik 2013 no. 46, 104-105 bibliographic details
  • Location

    G2/fc165

  • Exhibition history

    Exhibited:

    2003 22 Mar-12 Oct, Woodbridge, Sutton Hoo Exhibition Centre, Far Fetched Treasures
    2008 15 Mar-2 Nov, Woodbridge, Suffolk, Sutton Hoo Visitor Centre, East Anglia: The Life and Death of a Kingdom
    1980 10 Mar-30 Sep, Sweden, Stockholm, Statens Historika Museum, The Vikings are Here

  • Conservation

    See treatments 

  • Subjects

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date

    1939

  • Acquisition notes

    Excavated 1939

  • Department

    Britain, Europe and Prehistory

  • Registration number

    1939,1010.4

COMPASS Image Caption: Shoulder clasps

COMPASS Image Caption: Shoulder clasps

Image description

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Object reference number: MCS15706

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