Petala aurea Gold Sheet-work of Byzantine and Lombard Origin from the Rovati Collection

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Marco Sannazaro, Caterina Giostra

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Johan & Levi Editore
Territory: USA & Canada
Size: 9.5 in x 9 in
Pages: 240
Illustrations: 153 color, 32 b&w
New Title

RRP $35.00

  • Petala aurea presents a collection of gold artifacts which offer a snapshot of the figurative art of the Early Medieval period and the beliefs that underpinned it
  • Key book for the study of Medieval Italian goldsmithing
  • Valuable private collection offered for the first to the public and scholars

Petala aurea (petal of gold) is the term used in Early Medieval treatizes to describe the fine sheet and foil (bracteates) used in goldsmithing.

The book presents a collection of 47 thin gold sheet-work, with some exceptions in silver and copper alloy, owned by Prof. Rovati, Italian industrialist and art collector. This collection includes Lombard gold-sheet crosses and another fine foils of different shapes, extremely peculiar and difficult to pin down as they are unmatched in the Late Medieval jewelry known so far. The artifacts can be dated mainly to between the sixth and seventh centuries, while in terms of provenance and cultural milieu they bear traces of both the proto-Byzantine and "Barbarian" culture.

Marco Sannazaro, Chair in Medieval Archaeology and Archaeology of Medieval Settlements and Places of Worship at the Università Cattolica in Milan, also teaches Archaeology and History of early Christian and Byzantine art at the post-graduate School of Classical and Medieval Archaeology. He is a member of the board for the research doctorate in Archaeology of Processes of Transformation, the Accademia di Sant Ambrogio, the Association pour l'Antiquité tardive and the Società degli Archeologi Medievisti Italiani. Caterina Giostra is a researcher and lecturer on Christian and Medieval Archaeology and a member of the faculty of the post-graduate School of Archaeological Heritage at the Università Cattolica in Milan. She is also a member of the university council for Post-classical Archaeology and the teaching board of the graduate degree course in Cultural Heritage Sciences at the Università Cattolica in Milan, the Società degli Archeologi Medievisti Italiani and the Association pour l'Antiquité tardive.