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Hunterston Brooch


Hunterston Brooch, an early Christian brooch with panels of gold filigree in Celtic and Anglo-Saxon styles, from Ireland or the West of Scotland, c. 700 AD

Museum reference

X.FC 8



Object name


Production information

Scotland, EUROPE
Ireland, EUROPE


c. 700

Style / Culture

Early Christian


Silver, Gold, Gilt, Amber

Physical description

Silver and gold; amber settings; panels of interlaced work; runic inscription on the back

Collection place(s)

Hunterston, Ayrshire, Scotland, EUROPE


Previous owner: Melbrigda
Ireland, EUROPE


  • Scotland's Early Silver (13 Oct 2017 - 25 Feb 2018)
    National Museum of Scotland

  • Celts (10 Mar 2016 - 25 Sep 2016)
    National Museum of Scotland

  • Celts: Art and Identity (24 Sep 2015 - 31 Jan 2016)
    British Museum

  • The World of the Celts: Centres of Power - Treasures of Art (15 Sep 2012 - 17 Feb 2013)
    Wurttemberg State Museum

  • Future Museum (01 Jun 2007)
    World Wide Web

  • Vikings: Life and Legend (06 Mar 2014 - 22 Jun 2014)
    British Museum


Youngs, Susan (ed). 'The Work of Angels'. Masterpieces of Celtic metalwork, 6th-9th centuries AD. London: British Museums Publications Ltd, 1989, pp 91-2

Stevenson, Robert B.K. The Hunterston brooch and its significance. Medieval Archaeology, 18 (1974), pp 16-42

Stevenson, Robert B.K. Further notes on the Hunterston and 'Tara' brooches, Monymusk reliquary and Blackness bracelet. Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, 113 (1983), pp 469-477, esp. pp 469-473

Whitfield, Niamh. The filigree of the Hunterston and 'Tara' brooches. In: Spearman, R. Michael and Higgit, John. The Age of Migrating Ideas. Early Medieval Art in Northern Britain and Ireland. Edinburgh and Stroud: National Museums of Scotland and Alan Sutton Publishing, 1993, pp 118-127

MOSAICS' multimedia programme. NMS 1994,-industry-and-trade/hunterston-brooch.aspx

On display

national museum of scotland »
scotland galleries »
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symbols of power

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