Thursday, January 31, 2008

The Fuller Brooch - not a manuscript

The Fuller Brooch
Originally uploaded by uk - charlie
For a change of pace, I thought I would not do a manuscript today. This is the Fuller Brooch, a piece of 9th century Anglo-Saxon jewelry. It may be the only piece of secular Anglo-Saxon metal work to survive above ground. (All other secular pieces have been found as part of treasure hoards. Some religious pieces survived in churches.) Years ago, when I first started at Wikipedia, I wrote my first article about this brooch. To quote what I said there:

The Fuller Brooch is a large disc made of hammered sheet silver inlaid with black niello and with a diameter of 11.4 cm. Its center roundel is decorated with personifications of the five senses. In the center is Sight with large staring oval eyes, surrounded by the other four senses, each in his own compartment. Taste has a hand in his mouth. Smell's hands are behind his back, and he stands between two tall plants. Touch rubs his hands together. Hearing holds his hand to his ear. This is the earliest known representation of the five senses. In the outer border are human, bird, animal and plant motifs.

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