Bronze Fibula - Romano-British - Fish Brooch, c. 2nd Cent AD


Bronze Fibula: Roman (Romano-British) - Fish Brooch

Circa 2nd Century AD

An exceptionally fine ancient Roman bronze zoomorphic brooch depicting a fish. This brooch is in excellent condition: it has a fine glossy patina and the pin is intact.

This brooch probably represents a freshwater fish with a high dorsal fin. The scale pattern is rendered in high relief. Fish brooches with this design are thought to be British in origin. A fish brooch found in Lincolnshire is pictured in Richard Hattatt “Ancient Brooches,” fig. 221 (1198) and another with similar shape is #E07-0501 in Murawski, “Artifacts of England & the United Kingdom”.

The fibula was in widespread use throughout the ancient world, originally functioning as a fastening for a heavy cloak or tunic. The Roman conquests spread the use of the fibula, which became the basis for more complicated brooches that served both as functional and decorative elements. The “safety-pin” type of fibula/brooch continued to be used up into the Middle Ages.

(48 mm in Length – 1 7/8”)

  • Inventory Number: PA-3536