The Cleveland Museum of Art

Collection Online as of March 4, 2024

Belt Buckle

Belt Buckle

c. 525–560

Description

The art of the European Migration Period (3rd-7th centuries AD) is almost exclusively one of personal adornment-a portable art that followed men and women to their graves. Belt buckles with large rectangular attachment plates have been discovered in cemeteries across the Iberian Peninsula-now occupied by Spain and Portugal-from the period of Visigothic occupation (about AD 412-711). Their decoration varies. Finer examples, like this one, are distinguished by brilliantly inlaid semi-precious stones and colored glass. Garnets were especially prized in Visigothic society for use in cloisonné jewelry. The technique involved the fitting of carefully cut pieces of polished garnet into an intricate grid of compartments, or cloisons. This buckle is so densely inlaid with garnets that it presents a virtual "carpet" of red to the eye. These large Visigothic buckles are strikingly uniform in shape yet endlessly varied in surface design, perhaps a sign that they expressed the personal identities of their original owners. Grave excavations have shown that belt buckles of this type were made for women.
  • Benzaquen Family, Gibraltar, sold to Ariadne Galleries
    -2001
    Ariadne Galleries, New York, NY, sold to the Cleveland Museum of Art
    2001-
    The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, Oh
  • Ariadne Galleries, and Meadows Museum. Spain: A Heritage Rediscovered 3000 BC-AD 711. New York: Ariadne Galleries, 1992. Mentioned and reproduced: P. 124-125
    Fliegel, Stephen N., "Wearable Wealth", Cleveland Museum of Art. Cleveland Art: The Cleveland Museum of Art Members Magazine. Vol. 42 no. 04, April 2002 Mentioned & reproduced: p. 8-9 archive.org
    Cleveland Museum of Art, and Holger A. Klein. Sacred Gifts and Worldly Treasures: Medieval Masterworks from the Cleveland Museum of Art. Cleveland, Ohio: Cleveland Museum of Art, 2007. Mentioned and reproduced: P. 106-107, no. 33
  • Sacred Gifts and Worldly Treasures: Medieval Masterworks from the Cleveland Museum of Art. National Museum of Bavaria, Munich, Germany (May 10-September 16, 2007); J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, CA (October 30, 2007-January 20, 2008); Frist Art Museum, Nashville, TN (February 13-June 7, 2009).
    Bavarian Nationalmuseum, Munich (5/10/2007 - 9/16/2007), the J. Paul Getty Musuem, Los Angeles (10/30/2007 - 1/20/2008) and Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Nashville, TN (2/13/2009 - 6/7/2009): "Sacred Gifts and Worldly Treasures: Medieval Masterworks from the Cleveland Museum of Art"
  • {{cite web|title=Belt Buckle|url=false|author=|year=c. 525–560|access-date=04 March 2024|publisher=Cleveland Museum of Art}}

Source URL:

https://www.clevelandart.org/art/2001.119