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5th C Merovingian Gilt Silver Buckle Dragon Head Tongue

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5th C Merovingian Gilt Silver Buckle Dragon Head Tongue
Item Details
Description
**Originally Listed At $1200**

Western Europe, France / Gaul, Merovingian, Migration Period, ca. 5th to 6th century CE. A dazzling gilt silver clasp presenting a discoid buckle hinged to an openwork, ovoid loop and a tongue in the form of a dragon's head. The decorative buckle is adorned with a silver circle at the center surrounded by a gilt rondel of 2 triskeles and then a silver border with an incised zigzag line. A series of petite, undulating striations additionally embellishes the gilt periphery. The dragon's head tongue extends from the central hinge, displaying a lengthy neck with horizontal bands and liberal remains of black pigment, as well as ovoid eyes, a shaggy coiffure, and an elongated snout that slants upwards to act as a hook, which boasts a gilt and tiered periphery resembling a picture frame. The verso of the buckle displays a sharp spike that would have pierced the strap and firmly hold the clasp in place. Size: 1.3" L x 0.8" H (3.3 cm x 2 cm); metal quality: front: 65 to 84% gold (equivalent to 15K+ to 20K+), verso: 81% silver; weight: 10.3 grams

Merovingian and other cultural styles from the period after the fall of the Roman Empire - variously referred to as the Dark Ages, the Migration Period, or, more archaically, the Period of Barbarian Invasions - appeal to us not only because of their extraordinary beauty, but because they are rarely seen today. The Merovingians were a Frankish dynasty that ruled a large portion of western and central Europe for approximately three hundred years. During that time, they practiced a pagan religion in which people were buried with vast wealth, including gold and silver, as seen in this example.

Provenance: private Toronto, Ontario, Canada collection; ex-private Bristol, UK collection

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

PLEASE NOTE: Due to recent increases of shipments being seized by Australian & German customs (even for items with pre-UNESCO provenance), we will no longer ship most antiquities and ancient Chinese art to Australia & Germany. For categories of items that are acceptable to ship to Australia or Germany, please contact us directly or work with your local customs brokerage firm.

Display stands not described as included/custom in the item description are for photography purposes only and will not be included with the item upon shipping.

#166945
Condition
Some expected nicks, abrasions, and fading of detail, commensurate with age. Otherwise, intact and excellent with nice encrustations and liberal remains of black pigment.
Buyer's Premium
  • 26.5%

5th C Merovingian Gilt Silver Buckle Dragon Head Tongue

Estimate $1,400 - $2,100
May 26, 2022
See Sold Price
Starting Price $700
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Ships from Louisville, CO, United States
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Artemis Gallery

Artemis Gallery

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0038: 5th C Merovingian Gilt Silver Buckle Dragon Head Tongue

Lot Passed
0 Bids
Est. $1,400 - $2,100Starting Price $700
CLEARANCE | Antiquities, Ethnographica, More!
May 26, 2022 10:00 AM EDT
Buyer's Premium 26.5%

Lot 0038 Details

Description
...
**Originally Listed At $1200**

Western Europe, France / Gaul, Merovingian, Migration Period, ca. 5th to 6th century CE. A dazzling gilt silver clasp presenting a discoid buckle hinged to an openwork, ovoid loop and a tongue in the form of a dragon's head. The decorative buckle is adorned with a silver circle at the center surrounded by a gilt rondel of 2 triskeles and then a silver border with an incised zigzag line. A series of petite, undulating striations additionally embellishes the gilt periphery. The dragon's head tongue extends from the central hinge, displaying a lengthy neck with horizontal bands and liberal remains of black pigment, as well as ovoid eyes, a shaggy coiffure, and an elongated snout that slants upwards to act as a hook, which boasts a gilt and tiered periphery resembling a picture frame. The verso of the buckle displays a sharp spike that would have pierced the strap and firmly hold the clasp in place. Size: 1.3" L x 0.8" H (3.3 cm x 2 cm); metal quality: front: 65 to 84% gold (equivalent to 15K+ to 20K+), verso: 81% silver; weight: 10.3 grams

Merovingian and other cultural styles from the period after the fall of the Roman Empire - variously referred to as the Dark Ages, the Migration Period, or, more archaically, the Period of Barbarian Invasions - appeal to us not only because of their extraordinary beauty, but because they are rarely seen today. The Merovingians were a Frankish dynasty that ruled a large portion of western and central Europe for approximately three hundred years. During that time, they practiced a pagan religion in which people were buried with vast wealth, including gold and silver, as seen in this example.

Provenance: private Toronto, Ontario, Canada collection; ex-private Bristol, UK collection

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

PLEASE NOTE: Due to recent increases of shipments being seized by Australian & German customs (even for items with pre-UNESCO provenance), we will no longer ship most antiquities and ancient Chinese art to Australia & Germany. For categories of items that are acceptable to ship to Australia or Germany, please contact us directly or work with your local customs brokerage firm.

Display stands not described as included/custom in the item description are for photography purposes only and will not be included with the item upon shipping.

#166945
Condition
...
Some expected nicks, abrasions, and fading of detail, commensurate with age. Otherwise, intact and excellent with nice encrustations and liberal remains of black pigment.

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