Silver bowl

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From St Ninian's Isle, Dunrossness, Shetland

Postcard of Silver bowl.
© National Museums Scotland

Silver bowl

This silver bowl was found in a hoard containing 28 silver objects and part of the jaw of a porpoise, buried in a ruined chapel on St Ninian's Isle, at Dunrossness, on Shetland between 750 and 825. The objects probably belonged to a Pictish chief.

The bowl is decorated with punched dots forming geometric patterns.

The metalwork found in the St Ninian's Isle treasure shows the skill and accomplishment of Pictish craftsmen. The use of dotted backgrounds and some of the animal decoration on other objects are distinctive Pictish artistic traits.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-100-036-420-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0098: National Museums Scotland
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  X.FC 272
Date: Between 750 and 825
Material: Shallow; flat base; decorated by lines of dots; upper zone has T-shaped panels alternately inverted; lower zone has radiating ovals; base outlined and divided into four panels, each filled with an angular spiral
Dimensions: 5.80" D x 1.30" deep
What: Bowl
Where: Scotland, Shetland, St Ninian's Isle
Description: Shallow bowl with a flat base, decorated with lines of dots, the upper zone with T-shaped panels alternately inverted, the lower zone of radiating ovals, from St Ninian's Isle, Shetland
  • Calder, Jenni. The wealth of a nation. Edinburgh: National Museums of Scotland and Glasgow: Richard Drew Publishing, 1989, p. 118. 
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