Viking Identities: Scandinavian Jewellery in England

Hardcover | February 28, 2013

byJane F. Kershaw

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Viking Identities is the first detailed archaeological study of Viking-Age Scandinavian-style female dress items from England. Based on primary archival and archaeological research, including the analysis of hundreds of recent metal-detector finds, it presents evidence for over 500 broochesand pendants worn by women in the late ninth and tenth centuries. Jane F. Kershaw argues that these finds add an entirely new dimension to the limited existing archaeological evidence for Scandinavian activity in the British Isles and make possible a substantial reassessment of the Vikingsettlements.Kershaw offers an interpretation of the significance of the jewellery in a broader, historical context. The jewellery highlights locations of settlement not commonly associated with the Vikings. In contrast to claims of high levels of cultural assimilation, the jewellery suggests that incominggroups maintained a distinct Scandinavian identity which was sometimes appropriated by the indigenous population. Kershaw also addresses one of the great unanswered questions in the study of Viking-Age settlements: what about the women? The interpretation of the jewellery challenges traditionalperceptions of Viking conquest as an all-male affair and brings into focus a population group which has, until now, been almost invisible.Kershaw describes the objects and explores a number of themes related to their contemporary use, including their date, distribution, and function in costume. This body of material - unknown 30 years ago - is introduced to a public audience for the first time. Including many object images and maps,the study provides a practical guide to the identification of Scandinavian metalwork.

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Viking Identities is the first detailed archaeological study of Viking-Age Scandinavian-style female dress items from England. Based on primary archival and archaeological research, including the analysis of hundreds of recent metal-detector finds, it presents evidence for over 500 broochesand pendants worn by women in the late ninth a...

Jane Kershaw received her BA in History at Oxford University. She was a Kennedy Scholar at Harvard University before returning to Oxford to complete a PhD. She is British Academy Post-Doctoral Research Fellow and Junior Research Fellow at Balliol College, Oxford.
Format:HardcoverDimensions:288 pages, 9.69 × 6.73 × 0.98 inPublished:February 28, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199639523

ISBN - 13:9780199639526

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Table of Contents

1. Scandinavian-style jewellery in England: approaches and sources2. Identifying Scandinavian and Anglo-Scandinavian jewellery3. Scandinavian-style jewellery from England: origins, styles, and parallels4. The production and life-span of Scandinavian-style jewellery5. Brooch use, culture, and gender6. Locating Scandinavian influence: the distribution of Scandinavian-style jewellery in England7. Synthesis and conclusion: constructing cultural identitiesBibliographyAppendices