northeastern China or Inner Asia (or Central Asia)
10th–early 12th century AD (or 12th–early 13th century AD)
cast and sheet copper alloy and wire, gilded; fabric or leather backing
4.15 x 5.95cm (T-fittings);
3.4 x 2cm (hexagonal plaques/ fittings);
3.5 x 2.2cm (terminals)
This group of fittings – comprising over 100 pieces, most likely represents fittings from more than one belt. However, seven T-shaped pieces with a central boss, 35 of elongated hexagonal shape, nine terminals (similar in shape to the hexagons but with one end truncated) and a buckle – appear to be from a single set. The fittings are decorated in high relief with some chasing, primarily with palmettes and symmetrical scrolls, each scroll terminating in a pronounced dot, and have slightly foliated edges. Many still have their back-plates, secured by rivets, and some retain fragments of leather or fabric sandwiched between the front and back plates.
M. Spink & J. Ogden, The Art of Adornment, Jewellery of the Islamic Lands, The Nasser D. Khalili Collection of Islamic Art, volume XVII, Part Two, London 2013, cat.293, pp.330–31. J.M. Rogers, The Arts of Islam. Masterpieces from the Khalili Collection, London 2010, cat.214, pp.182–3.