The Hunterston Brooch ~
This famous early brooch with panels of gold filigree combining Celtic and Anglo-Saxon styles was made in the west of Scotland or Ireland around 700 AD.
This piece was found in 1830 on the Hunterston Estate in Ayrshire. It is a masterpiece of craft skills, and would have been worn by powerful nobles or clerics. Its style is typical of the region, combining Celtic and Anglo-Saxon influences.
It is made of silver, richly decorated with amber settings and panels of filigree goldwork representing interlaced beasts. The back has gilded interlaced decoration.
It had a long life, falling into the hands of Vikings around AD 1000 - a runic inscription on the back reads ‘Melbrigda owns this brooch’…
Hand-colored 17th century engraving praising the “Achievement Of Our Soveraigne King Charles The II, With The Armes of the Severall Kings that have anciently Reigned within his Dominons”…