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Viking rock crystal pendant in gold. A gold pendant set to centre with an oval keeled cabochon of natural unenhanced rock crystal in a closed backclaw and cutdown setting, the stylised triangular claws feature granule decoration which terminates to a slim linear border, the base continues with a single row of granulation, all to a secure suspension loop with fine ropework edges and raised triangular patterns, approximately 3.2cm in length. Tested yellow gold, circa 9th-11th century AD.
It is believed that crystal pendants such as this were used by seers (known as Völur or fjölkunnig) to practice the arts of sorcery and prophecy; these seers were held in such high regard that even Odin, the father of the gods, sought their advice about the future.
Further examples of Viking quartz amulets, mainly excavated at Visby, in Sweden, can be viewed in the Fornsal Historical Museum in Visby and at the Swedish National Museum in Stockholm.
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