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Celtic metalworkers used a wide variety of materials and techniques to produce their works of art. (¡old, silver, bronze, enamel, and glass were all favored, and many objects were composed of multiple materials. Techniques of filigree, inlay, and gilding were highly specialized, and many of the best pieces were probably the product of several artists.

During the Celtic Renaissance in Ireland,

_materials were shipped from as far away as the Mediterranean. Tin was almost certainly imported from Cornwall, while Ireland itself provided a source for small quantities of gold, silver, copper, and iron. Silver and copper mines existed in medieval times, and there is some evidence that mines existed in Ireland and Scotland during the preceding centuries.

The richness of this collection of horse

The richness of this collection of horse harness fittings (British, lst-century ad) indicates that they belonged to a wealthy land-owner, or were part of a ritual burial for a great warrior. They are made from bronze with inlaid glass.

The red glass of Celtic enamel work was imported from the Mediterranean long alter the collapse of the Roman Empire.

It had been argued that when the Romans left Britain, access to overseas materials ceased. Archaeological evidence now proves this assumption to be false, and Celtic traders developed their own links which stretched as far as Spain and the western Mediterranean. Historians also suggested that the Celts had to make do with scrap metal left behind by the Romans, or alternatively melt down existing objects. While this was certainly done, supplies of scrap metal were minimal compared with the quantities available from British mines or from imported metals. Recent metallurgical tests have revealed distinguishing features in local Celtic metalwork. For example, Irish silver was often alloyed with pure copper, while silver produced in England contained copper and bronze. It appears that there was an abundance of locally produced or imported metals available for the needs of the late Celtic metalworkers.

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