This is a nice medieval bronze signet ring, dating to the late 14th - 15th century. The bezel is engraved with a standing figure of Saint Catherine, holding a wheel and palm fond. Saint Catherine was one of the most important saints in the religious culture of the late Middle Ages and arguably considered the most important of the virgin martyrs, a group including Saint Agnes, Margaret of Antioch, Saint Barbara, Saint Lucy, Valerie of Limoges and many others. Her power as an intercessor, with her cult centered around universities and colleges as a patron saint of learning. The size of the ring would suggest it once belonged to a man, so likely someone associated with education and learning, or worn to assist with studies and reading. A good ring in excavated condition.
OBJECT: Signet Ring
DATE: c. 14th - 15th century A.D.
RING SIZE: 11 (US) V 1/2 (UK)
SIZE: 23mm x 25mm x 3mm (bezel 15mm x 10mm x 3mm)
WEIGHT: 4.95 grams
PROVENANCE: Ex. Gilbert Collection, Winchester. Originally acquired from Ely, Cambridgeshire.
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