In the words of archaeologist Sabatino Moscati: “We have before us undoubtedly, the oldest, the greatest and the most illuminating form of ornamental art that Europe has ever had”. To what was Moscati referring? To the great and enchanting art of Celtic jewellery.
The Celts became known across the globe for their uniquely crafted jewellery of every wonderful kind. A particularly popular piece worn by men, women and children alike was the Celtic brooch. At a time when such things as zips and fasteners did not exist, these brooches would, in part, serve a practical use enabling the wearer to pin a garment together, not to mention the fact that often the jewellery was simply worn as decoration.
Celtic jewellery was also used by these ancient folk as a way to make a social statement. Famed for emanating an air of fascination and mystery, a Celtic brooch was commonly used as an amulet. For example many graves have been found where even children have been buried wearing a number of Celtic brooches believed by these ancient peoples to have been a way of protecting the deceased. Many Celtic brooches have been found in burial sites throughout Europe. Celtic jewellery, necklaces, pendants, rings and Celtic brooches at times held much sentimental value, some pieces being passed down from generation to generation, clan to clan, family to family; from mother to daughter, from father to son. Each piece carrying with it a precious memory or perhaps a tale of victory, of defeat; of love or of tragedy.
Celtic craftsman took their inspiration from the natural (and at times not so natural) world around them and you will find that many a Celtic brooch would have been fashioned after dogs, deer, horses, birds, and a plethora of animal heads, known as masks, of either real or even imagined creatures.
We at the Historical Jewellery Reproduction Company currently have three carefully crafted Celtic brooches available for purchase. We have the beautiful gold original Ipswich Torque Terminal brooch originally discovered in Suffolk in 1968 and now to be found on display at the British Museum in London. We have the unique Draqonesque Celtic Brooch, first discovered at Tullie House in Carlisle in 1956. We also have the Celtic Plaque brooch originally dating back to the 1st or 2nd Century AD depicting the face of a warrior and unearthed at Hadrian’s Wall in Northumberland.
As a 7th generation goldsmith and with a passion for recreating the endlessly intricate and fascinating array of decorative pieces from these age-old worlds, we at the Historical Jewellery Reproduction Company are passionate about our unique field of artistry. Each of these Celtic brooches has been painstakingly and meticulously crafted to as near as perfectly possible, resemble the original. For more details and to see other examples of these stunning ancient Celtic pieces of jewellery and indeed jewellery from various time periods throughout history including Anglo-Saxon, Roman, Egyptian and Bronze-age pieces, please visit our website and take a step back in time even just for a moment.