Amulet pendants: a dotted line running from the classical Antiquity to the Middle ages

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The paper analyzes amulet pendants shaped as a geometrically divided sphere that have identical shape and date to different periods, i.e. 1st - 5th centuries and the 9th - 10th centuries. It offers a typology based on design and ornamentation ideas about the shape of the item, which allows researchers to perform general comparative analysis. Properly made items created through technological creativity acquired a magical significance and were treated as models or examples of the structure of the world and material objects. If this precondition was met, such items became amulets. Various cultural communities added specific meanings to symbols. The shape of the jewelry piece developed in Rome to be subsequently borrowed by Crimean goldsmiths of the Late Classical period and the Early Medieval period whereas imitations led to simpler designs and ornamentation. As jewelry of Medieval Rus developed, Byzantine filigree pieces were used as sample models. A filigree pendant from Kerch dating to the 9th -10th centuries implies this trajectory. However, having acquired the filigree skills, jewelers of Medieval Rus found their own way to make the design of beads more rational.


Pendants, amulets, sphere, construction, ornamentation dividing line, specimen, magical significance

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IDR: 14328361

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