Before the Roman invasion of the British Isles, rings of bronze, silver, and gold were used as a means of exchange, particularly in Ireland. Most exchanges of goods and property were conducted by barter based on shrewd evaluations in each specific situation. Some needed to be more accurately quantified and a system of bronze rings of various sizes evolved. These rings fulfilled that need as well as providing a palpable demonstration of value. They were worn, sewn to men’s leather jerkins as displays of prosperity. A refined subgroup of those rings intricately adorned in floral motifs evolved at the same time. The conspicuous difference between these and the plain counterparts suggests that they were for very specific purposes, probably the bride’s prices. As such, they would have had spiritual significance as well. They accord in form, but vary in detail, having been hand engraved. This example is just over 1” (1.09”). It has been professionally refurbished with the silver overlay restored and mounted on a Sterling silver neck chain, for contemporary wear. Jewelry gift boxed with a certificate of authenticity.  Silvered bronze. Just over 1” height, formed as a stylized heart, combining the favorite Viking symbol with the circle to preserve strength.  When fastened to the jerkin, these small metal brooches provided a measure of protection against sword cuts and, in fact, were a form of armor. See current Public Television programming for documentation of these in action. As protectors, they also held spiritual significance for the warrior. Professionally refurbished with the silver overlay restored and suspended from a 18” Sterling silver neck chain. Jewelry gift boxed with certificate of authenticity.
Stock Number: B3327

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