Brooch card

Courtesy of National Museums Liverpool, World Museum

Brooch

M6004

Currently not on display

Information

'Jutlandic' great square-headed brooch comrpising of a headplate and a footplate. The top right hand corner is broken. The border to the upper edge of the head plate is a narrow raised silver ridge (not gilded) with nielloed zig-zag; the lower border is a plain silver ridge with the more usual reserved silver zig-zag with nielloed triangles; the sides have no outer border. The outer zone of the decoration consists of a pair of Style I animals. The heads are in the bottom panels flanking the top of the bow and facing downwards. The neck is at right-angles to the heads, reaching up the side panel is in 3 strands to the spiral shoulder joint; fore-leg with simple collared foot stretched down above neck towards head. The cental strand of the neck and flank is decorated with a row of circular beads produced by nicking. The 3 strand body terminates in the upper corners of plate in a pear-shaped hip joint, with a simple foot stretched across the top panel claws upwards. Another hip and clawed foot interlocks with this one beneath, and its collared 2-clawed foot turns the inner corner of the panel. This foot probably belongs to a second creature, one of a pair confronted at the top centre of the plate. It has a slight 2-strand body, pear-shaped shoulder and crouched forefoot, arched 2-strand neck, and triple collar with notched centre bar behind head. The head has a triangular brow, a round eye and a bulbous cheek. The profile heads of the two upper creatures confronted make a double image of a full-faced mask also glaring out from top centre. The inner panel of the headplate has silver ridge-border with two rows of nielloed triangles. In the footplate there are three circular lobes, between which are some creatures with one or tw Above the bow is an upward facing full-face mask, flanked on either side by a pair of creatures contorted to fit the space. There is a pear-shaped hip and foot in the inner corner of the next mask, facing outwards, a 2-strand back, spiral shoulder joint in outer corner, triangular motif, perhaps a foot in top corner, then the head is turned in towards the mask at the top. Seen this way up, the confronted heads give the impression of a second full-face mask - the cheeks becoming eyes, the beaks eyebrows, and the beard of the inverted mask the nose, thus a characteristic example of this type of double or even trouple image effect which is common on Style I art from this period The bow is steep sided with a flat top; the edges of the bow have decoration of ascending grooves, the lowest with decorative punching. The top recessed, with an inner ridge enclosing a full-face mask; peaked hair or helmet, globular cheeks, diamond-shaped beard. At the sides of the footplate at the top are pendant animal heads, with neilloed brow-band (alternating triangles), circlet eye, nose, human mouth, then a huge swelling beak which curls inside at the neck, inwards and upwards. The necks of the creature are grooved and nicked; the inner edge of raised silver relief band which curves in and out to join the roundels at the side of the plate; the lozenge-shaped border of the undivided foot bears a single in-facing line of nielloed triangles, whereas the side roundels simply have a nielloed groove. Full face masks in side roundel are very simple: the peaked helmet or cap, a single rounded eye at centre, flanked by globular cheeks, with arched mouth below. At the centre of the footplate, a quatrefoil in relief, with median grooves, surrounded by nicked inner border. At the bottom of the footplate, the nielloed border of the internal lozenge leads into a full-face mask. Nose and beard project into the frame of the lower roundel. The area between the lower and outer lobes of the footplate is broken away on one side, but on the other carries an upward-climbing creature facing inwards. The catchplate is missing. The back of the head pair of perforated lugs for the spring coil. Iron corrosion suggests that this was an iron coil and pin.