© President and Fellows of Harvard College
Identification and Creation
Object Number
2003.236
Title
Buckle End with Interlacing Relief
Classification
Jewelry
Work Type
jewelry
Date
8th-11th century
Places
Creation Place: Ancient & Byzantine World, Europe
Period
Middle Ages
Culture
Viking
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Leaded brass
Technique
Cast, lost-wax process
Dimensions
3.52 x 2.21 cm (1 3/8 x 7/8 in.)
Technical Details

Chemical Composition: XRF data from Artax 1
Alloy: Leaded Brass
Alloying Elements: copper, lead, zinc
Other Elements: iron
K. Eremin, January 2014

Technical Observations: The patina is a cupritic reddish-brown under green corrosion. A large portion of the body of the object is missing, including the terminal and a corner of the bifurcate section on the reverse. The edges are worn.

The body of the object was originally cast in one piece by the lost-wax process. The shallow step on the reverse corresponds to where the lower bifurcating section was joined to the upper part in the wax stage. The decorative pattern on the top was probably already present in the wax and enhanced in the metal, although it is difficult to be certain since the top surface is entirely covered with a very fine peened texture, probably as a result of a mechanical post-excavation cleaning. There is no evidence of inlays, although the possibility that it once had inlay cannot be completely excluded. Both rivets survive and have corroded differently than the body of the object, suggesting they are made of a different material. One of them appears to be faceted, but that may be an artifact of corrosion.


Francesca G. Bewer (submitted 2012)

Provenance
Gift from Joseph Linzalone of Wolfshead Gallery.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Gift from the Linzalone Family
Accession Year
2003
Object Number
2003.236
Division
Asian and Mediterranean Art
Contact
am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu
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Descriptions

Published Catalogue Text: Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern Bronzes at the Harvard Art Museums
This belt element is broken at one end, but the other preserves the bifurcated plates held together by rivets characteristic of strap ends. The body is much broader than other strap ends in the collection and is rectangular, where the others are curved and molded. It is decorated in relief with an interlocking lattice motif within a simple border. The back is flat and featureless.

Lisa M. Anderson

Subjects and Contexts

Ancient Bronzes

This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art at am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu