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Research Coins: Feature Auction

Sale: CNG 78, Lot: 2231. Estimate $300. 
Closing Date: Wednesday, 14 May 2008. 
Sold For $555. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

ROMAN. Imperial. Gilt Silver Fibula. 3rd-4th centuries AD. Fibula of P-shape type in the form of a hippocamp. Head plate decorated with punched spiral motif and knob, long tail decorated with diagonal lines and terminating in bulb. Original inlay in eyes now missing, a single hole in each ear would have once held additional decoration. Much of the original gilding remaining. Length: 6.9cm. Excellent condition.

This style of fibula appears to have been popular in Britain during the 3rd-4th century. For a very similar example in the British Museum with a punched christogram on the head plate, see the catalogue for the exhibit Jewellry through 7000 Years, figure 354.