Used since antiquity to fasten clothing, particularly cloaks, Fibula took on a circular or near circular design in the Migration Period in western Europe, culminating in the elaborate brooches of the dark ages that are now lauded as cultural treasures and a testament to the skill of Celtic, Scandinavian and Saxon jewel-smiths. Their use continued into the middle ages, though in typically simpler forms.
They were worn by both men and women with the point facing upwards and an Irish law code says that in the case of injury caused by the points on a fibulae the bearer was excused from fault so long as the pin was not sticking outwards too far.
The length measurement was taken from the opening of the ring to its back.
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