The Alfred Jewel Research Paper by Melleena

The Alfred Jewel
A discussion of the history, purpose and significance of the Alfred Jewel.
# 101514 | 1,553 words | 7 sources | MLA | 2008 | US
Published on Feb 27, 2008 in Anthropology (Europe) , History (British) , Archaeology (General)

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This paper discusses the Alfred Jewel, its design, purpose and significance. It explains that this jewel was the first Anglo-Saxon artifact ever to be found on British territory and that it is one of the most renowned objects to remain intact from Anglo-Saxon England, and is typically linked with Alfred the Great, king of the West Saxons from 871-99. The paper looks at the various interpretations of the design in the enamel of the jewel. The paper also explores the different theories on the supposed purpose of the Jewel. The paper also explains how the Alfred Jewel landed up in the Ashmolean Museum in England.

From the Paper:

"Since the jewel was discovered, there has been much speculation as to what purpose it was meant to serve. One theory is that the jewel was a symbol of office, either of Alfred or of one of his officials (Roberts). Alfred wholeheartedly devoted himself to providing his people with a valuable understanding of many subjects. Many scholars believe that the image carved into the enamel of the Alfred Jewel is mean to portray Christ as the embodied form of Wisdom of god (Hinton 51). It is common for objects from the Anglo-Saxon period to be adorned with explicitly Christian objects. Alfred had aspirations to use his own virtue and wisdom to acquire authority. Given that Alfred perceived power in such a manner, he might have considered the Alfred Jewel to be representative of worldly office."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Asser, John. Alfred The Great. New York: Penguin Books, 1995.
  • Gilbert, Adrian. "The Jewel and The Crown." Quest Magazine, Vol.1 issue 6. Online. 3 December 2001.
  • Hinton, David A. Alfred's Kingdom. London: J.M. Dent & Sons Ltd., 1977.
  • Keynes, Simon. "Replicas of the Alfred Jewel."
  • Roberts, Ken. "The Alfred Jewel."

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