Jet bead

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From Kildonan, Eigg, Inner Hebrides

Postcard of Jet bead.
© National Museums Scotland

Jet bead

This jet bead is one of two found in a man's grave at Kildonan on Eigg in the Inner Hebrides. He was buried between 875 and 925 with a sword, a plain penannular brooch, a belt, a whetstone, these beads and some small pieces of flint.

The plain bead has a flat upper and lower surface, and rounded edges.

There are no Scandinavian sources of jet, and the only significant British source of good quality jet occurs around Whitby in Yorkshire. Jet objects were considered exotic items from at least the 2nd millennium BC, and much prized by the Vikings.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-100-043-722-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 175
Date: Between 875 and 925
Material: Jet
What: Bead
Where: Scotland, Inverness-shire, Eigg, Kildonan
Description: Jet bead from Kildonan, Eigg
  • 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 69-70. 
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