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Belt Buckle
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Belt Buckle

Description Conservation Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description Buckles with openwork plates depicting griffins drinking from fountains have been found in many parts of France and Switzerland. The griffin, a mythical creature that is half eagle, half lion, originated in Assyria and symbolized vigilance and ferocity. They were a popular design motif throughout Europe during the Migration period. With the advent of Christianity, the griffin drinking from a cup came to symbolize the soul refreshing itself at the source of everlasting life.
Date Description Narrative
  • Jewelry - Ancient to Modern. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1979-1980.
  • Objects of Adornment: Five Thousand Years of Jewelry from the Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, New York; Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk; Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh; San Antonio Museum of Art, San Antonio; Philbrook Museum of Art, Tulsa; Honolulu Academy of Arts, Honolulu; New Orleans Museum of Art, New Orleans; Milwaukee Art Museum, Milwaukee; Minneapolis Institute of Art, Minneapolis; Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo; The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota. 1984-1987.
  • Jewelry from the Walters Art Gallery and the Zucker Family Collection. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1987.
Provenance Victor Gay, Paris, by purchase; Sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, March 23, 1909, no. 281; Joseph Brummer, New York [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Sale, Parke-Bernet Galleries, New York, May 12, 1949, no. 278; Walters Art Museum, 1949, by purchase.
Credit Museum purchase, 1949

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7th century (Early Medieval)
Accession Number
1 11/16 x 3 15/16 x 7/16 in. (4.3 x 10 x 1.1 cm)


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