A fine Romano-British bronze brooch in the form of a four columns temple, executed in openwork technique. A band divided into two registers and marked by slanted grooves features above and below the vertical columns, adding a decorative texture to the piece. The crescentic top is formed of two arches connected at the centre, above which two short lungs project upwards, possibly reminiscent of a Celtic palmette design. To the reverse, the hinged mechanism remains complete and intact, with the pin now fixed in position.
Date: Circa AD 150 - 225 Provenance: From a Surrey gentleman's collection (D.G.), purchased on the London Art market from ADA member, 1990s - onwards. Condition: Excellent condition. Patination and some earthy encrustations remain on the surface. The original pin is intact and locked.
Fibulae or brooches were originally used in Ancient Greece and in the Roman Empire for fastening garments, such as cloaks or togae. The fibula designs developed into a variety of shapes, but all were based on the safety-pin principle. Most pins were produced from bronze or iron however, precious metals such as gold have been used, owned by those of a higher status to demonstrate their wealth and power.
Brooches as this fine example fall within the ‘Openwork Non-enamelled’ type. Dating between AD 150 -225, these Roman-period brooches are mainly characterised by Celtic traditional motifs in different levels of elaboration. They appear to have been developed in the central European provinces of the Empire, specifically around Germany and Pannonia, with only a few example recovered in Britain or Gaul.
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