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Enamelwork from early Anglo-Saxon contexts

Dane, Caryl (2012) Enamelwork from early Anglo-Saxon contexts. PhD thesis, Prifysgol Bangor University.

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Abstract

This study concentrates upon two diverse categories of enamelled objects: items considered to be typical artefacts of the early Anglo-Saxon culture, which have essentially been dated to the sixth century, together with, approximately contemporaneous, enamelled hanging bowl furnishings. Much has been written about hanging bowls, which are frequently discovered in early Anglo-Saxon contexts, but enamelled early Anglo-Saxon metalwork is sparse and therefore, to date, has received comparatively little attention. This thesis is the first comprehensive study of enamelled early Anglo-Saxon metalwork. A substantial component of the study is cataloguing both categories of enamelled artefacts from Anglo-Saxon England, supported by photographs and drawings. Enamel was once believed to be a technique confined to the decoration of some Anglo-Saxon female dress-fasteners, but the catalogue extends the variety of known Anglo-Saxon artefact-types which carry enamel, by the addition of more recent finds. After a discussion of ways in which the Anglo-Saxon adventus has been viewed, the relationship between past and contemporary crafting skills, prevalent styles, and particular motifs associated with enamelwork, from the preceding Iron Age and Roman periods, and both classes of enamelwork, are examined and compared. A review of constituent analyses implies a technological change from Romano-British enamelling, but there is continuity in style and motifs. Caryl Dane Enamelwork from Early Anglo-Saxon Contexts ii Enamelled artefacts are further considered in terms of function, gender association, and status. These items were not ‘poor-man’s garnet’, but created for a privileged minority. The study extends to analyses of the concentration, dissemination of, and interconnection between, many of the enamelwork find-sites. A regional focus on East Anglia is demonstrated, particularly, South Cambridgeshire and the Lark valley area. The distribution outliers are much more widespread than previously thought. It is suggested that early Anglo-Saxon metalworkers were influenced by those who produced hanging bowls but it is unlikely they were working in the same workshops.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: No permission due to 3rd party Copyright content
Subjects: Degree Thesis
Departments: College of Arts and Humanities > School of History, Welsh History and Archaeology
Degree Thesis
Date Deposited: 28 Sep 2015 13:23
Last Modified: 11 May 2016 10:54
URI: http://e.bangor.ac.uk/id/eprint/5456
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