Brooch (back)

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from Clibberswick, Unst, Shetland

Postcard of Brooch (back).
© National Museums Scotland

Brooch (back)

This brass oval brooch was found with its pair and a bronze trefoil brooch in a Norse woman's grave at Clibberswick on Unst in Shetland, together with some glass beads and a plain silver bracelet which are now lost. The burial dates from between 850 and 900.

This picture shows the back of the brooch. The textile impressions indicate that it was made by the complicated lost wax method, where textiles were used to reinforce the mould.

The Vikings colonised the Northern Isles - Orkney and Shetland - from around 800. However, unlike Orkney, few Scandinavian graves have been found in Shetland. Perhaps the pagan burial practices were abandoned earlier there.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-000-099-738-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0036: Kiloran Bay Viking Burial (multimedia essay)
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  X.IL 223
Date: 9th century
Between 850 and 900
Material: Oval; bowl-shaped; textile imprint on reverse
What: Brooch
Who: Lerwick Collection
Where: Scotland, Shetland, Unst, Haroldswick, Clibberswick
Description: Oval brooch with textile imprint on reverse, from Clibberswick, Shetland, 9th century
  • Graham-Campbell, James and Batey, Colleen E. Vikings in Scotland. An Archaeological Survey. Edinburgh: University Press, 1998, pp 64, 153-4. 
  • Grieg, Sigurd. Viking Antiquities in Scotland (=Viking Antiquities in Great Britain and Ireland, Part II, ed. by Haakon Shetelig). Oslo: H. Aschehoug & Co., 1940, pp. 103-5. 
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