Anglo-Saxon 'Human Facemask & Bird Heads' Florid Cruciform Brooch 019921

Anglo-Saxon 'Human Facemask & Bird Heads' Florid Cruciform Brooch 019921
Anglo-Saxon 'Human Facemask & Bird Heads' Florid Cruciform Brooch
Copper-alloy, 70 grams, 129.28 mm. 5th-6th century AD. A good example of a developed florid cruciform brooch with rectangular headplate flanked by expanding wings, surrounded by three facemasks with bulging eyes flanked by bird-heads forming a continuous additional panel around the perimeter of the headplate, and with projecting lobes at the lower corners. There is ring-and-dot decoration on the headplate. The bow is flat and shallow with rudimentary faceting at the upper end. The footplate begins with a square panel with triangular zoomorphic lappets at each side; below this is a collar from which another facemask with bulging eyes emerges above a human face between bird-heads. The finial is in the form of a flat, pelta-shaped plate. The pin-lugs and catchplate are in place on the reverse with the remains of the iron pin. The brooch is very similar in design to the example from Darlington (Greenbanks), County Durham now in the Ashmolean Museum, but with a flatter bow. Reference: MacGregor, A. & Bolick, E. A Summary Catalogue of the Anglo-Saxon Collections (Non-Ferrous Metals), BAR British Series 230, 1993, item 12.35. Very fine condition. Provenance: from an old English collection, found Norfolk.
 
This item was accompanied by an illustrated Certificate of Authenticity.

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