Gold Appliqué in the Form of a Cross


On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 301

Once they were in Italy, the Langobards adopted the custom of sewing one or more crosses on the shrouds of the deceased. The origin and meaning of the custom remain uncertain.

This group of objects was found in the grave of a Langobardic horseman, who was buried in his warrior dress, with weapons, shield, helmet, and the fittings for his horse. What remains are the many gold pieces that would have ornamented his clothing and equipment, and they attest to the great wealth of the Langobardic aristocracy within a generation of settling in Italy.

Gold Appliqué in the Form of a Cross, Gold, Langobardic

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