Disk Brooch

Date: mid-600s

Culture: Frankish

Medium: Gold; garnet; red, pale, amber and blue glass; mother-of-pearl

Dimensions: Overall: 1 3/4 x 7/8 in. (4.4 x 2.2 cm)

Classification: Metalwork-Gold

Credit Line: Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917

Accession Number: 17.193.83


The art of the peoples living under Merovingian rule was largely that of the metalworker. Jewelry, particularly belonging to women, survives from cemeteries and tombs. The Franks, like many other Germanic tribes, valued articles of personal adornment, wearing them as status symbols and signs of power. Finely wrought brooches such as this example from a grave along the Rhine River were worn and admired in daily life and accompanied their owners after death.