Eine Mittelalterliche Gürtelschnalle mit Darstellung der Majestas Domini aus dem Watt bei Nordstrand


  • Ilona M. Gold


During amateur excavations in 1964,
a metal belt buckle as well as some Rhenish
and Hispano-Moresque ceramic vessels
were found in the mudflat southwest of
Nordstrand. This paper presents an iconographic
description and wider contextualisation
of the outstanding and hitherto
unpublished find. The belt buckle consists
of a rectangular plate with openwork ornamentation
showing Christ in a mandorla
sitting on the rainbow or the globe surrounded
by the symbols of the four evangelists, an
iconographic arrangement known as Majestas
Domini. The frame displays two inverted
animals, possibly bears or dogs, whose snouts
touch. On the basis of iconographic and technical-
stilistic comparisons with similar medieval
belt buckles (e. g. Dune in Gotland and
the Limoge type in France), the Nordstrand
specimen may be dated to the 12th to 14th centuries.
An outstanding aspect of the piece is
the so far unique depiction of the Majestas
Domini among belt buckles of the high and
late Middle Ages. Beside the ideational value,
the belt buckle assumedly constituted a form
of personal or outwardly displayed identity.
By wearing this unique piece with its special
iconography, the owner allocated himself intentionally
and actively to a specific religious
group — the Christian belief — and displayed
a specific social status. The find is thus an
important object that contributes to our understanding
of the constitution of social relationships
and the creation of identities trough
material culture in medieval times, and to reconstructing
the iconography and socio-economic
circumstances of this region.





Gold, I. M. (2020). Eine Mittelalterliche Gürtelschnalle mit Darstellung der Majestas Domini aus dem Watt bei Nordstrand. Arkæologi I Slesvig-Archäologie in Schleswig, (17), 185–195. Hentet fra https://tidsskrift.dk/arkaeologi_i_Slesvig/article/view/118613