Bracelets (fragments)

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found on Skye, Inner Hebrides

Postcard of Bracelets (fragments).
© National Museums Scotland

Bracelets (fragments)

These silver bracelets are the remains of two hoards of Viking silver found on Skye in the Inner Hebrides, one before 1781 and the other in 1850. They are examples of a distinctive Viking Age bracelet type called 'ring-money' common in Scotland in the 10th and 11th century.

All are plain, with the exception of the ends of the top left bracelet which has stamped dots on the terminal. The bracelet in the middle was joined together from three pieces in the 19th century, but another piece is still probably missing.

'Ring-money' highlights the overlap between ornament and bullion. They could be worn to display wealth, but when needed could be used as payment, cut up if necessary, and weighed on a balance. Some were manufactured to an approximate weight standard.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-100-043-666-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0098: National Museums Scotland
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  X.IL 119
Date: Deposited in the 10th or 11th century
Material: Silver
Dimensions: 2.75" D
What: Ring, arm / fragment
Where: Scotland, Inverness-shire, Skye
Description: Nicked arm ring fragment of silver, found in a cairn in Skye
  • Graham-Campbell, James. The Viking-age gold and silver of Scotland (AD 850-1100). Edinburgh: National Museums of Scotland, 1995, pp 38-40, 98, 105. 
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