From the sixth to the eighth century, the Avars maintained a complex relationship with the Byzantine Empire, alternatively protecting the empires borders and raiding the lands they had agreed to defend. Byzantine tribute payments and war booty provided the Avars with enormous amounts of gold and silver, with which their goldsmiths created works of exceptionally high quality.
This striking bracelet is adapted from an eighth-century gold belt mount in the Museums collection. Made by an Avar metalsmith, it was part of a larger group of gold objects found in Vrap, modern-day Albania. The treasure attests to the wealth of the Avars, a nomadic tribe of mounted warriors from the Eurasian steppe. 18K gold overlay, with resin. Imported. Box- and-tongue closure. 7 3/4”L.
18K gold overlay, with resin