A finely modelled Byzantine gold reliquary and amulet case comprising of a tubular thin gold sleeve featuring three suspension loops to the top. The gold case displays a fine granules decoration, with the granules arranged in piramids.
Date: Circa 9th-12th century AD Condition: Good condition. Some granulation missing and slight damage to the sleeve, but the main body of the amulet and the suspension loops remain intact.
In Byzantine society, reliquary and amulet holders, such as this beautiful example, would generally have contained tiny scrolls made from silver and bronze, with protective spells or prayers inscribed upon them. These may have been worn to protect the owner in everyday life, but have also been found in funerary contexts, suggesting their apotropaic purpose was likely believed to extend to the afterlife.
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