Encyclopedia of Medieval Dress and Textiles

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Throughout the period, the wearing, or not, of a necklace was linked to current fashions in garments: when necklines on items, such as dresses or tunics, were fitted up to the neck, necklaces were rarely worn. When low-necked garments were in fashion, a necklace was worn to complement the lower neckline. Necklaces were worn by both sexes, with individual styles for each.

Many Anglo-Saxon necklaces were simple strings of amber, terracotta or glass beads. More luxurious types used gold beads interspersed with small pendants containing garnet inlay. As a jewellery type, the neckl…

Cite this page
David Humphrey, “Necklace”, in: Encyclopedia of Medieval Dress and Textiles, Edited by: Gale Owen-Crocker, Elizabeth Coatsworth, Maria Hayward. Consulted online on 28 January 2020 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2213-2139_emdt_COM_471>
First published online: 2012
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004124356, 20120503

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