Колекция прорезни оловни накрайници от Рим-Шумен
Slotted Dense-Lead Strap-ends from RHM–Shumen
The number of the slotted belt strap-ends found on the territory of present-day Bulgaria and especially in
the northeastern part has increased significantly in recent years. The lead strap-ends/pendants form a separate
group among them, and their number (more than 100 artifacts) exceeds that of the bronze variety. Thirty strapends
have been published until present. This article is aimed at presenting nine new examples.
The dense strap-ends are decorated mainly with geometric designs, forming simple compositions. They
consist of parallel lines, zig-zags, circles, dots and sometimes Christian symbols and stylized composition of
The fact than such artifacts have not been found outside the boundaries of present-day territory of Bulgaria
proves beyond any doubt the local origin of both slotted dense-lead – and the openwork strap-ends. I believe
that the two main groups were used in different periods. The gryphon-tendril style bronze slotted openwork
strap-ends were manufactured from the second half of the 8th until the early 9th century. The dense-lead –belt
strap-ends can be regarded their replicas from a later period. They were most popular in the middle and especially
in the second half of the 9th – the early 10th century. However, it is also possible that artifacts from both
groups had been in use in the later period.