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This type of dress pin is known as a handpin, its head resembling the palm of the hand with the fingers bent forward. The earliest handpins are of silver and are of relatively modest size. Examples in copper alloy, with elaborately decorated heads and exceptionally long pins, were made in Ireland into the sixth century. Most developed handpins have five fingers rather than three as here. In this example the head is a semi-circular plate with a circular perforation. It is capped by three projecting fingers and is fixed to a right-angled projection at the top of the shank. The head is decorated with a pattern of reserved metal against a background of red enamel. The design consists of a pair of inward-curving dodo heads springing from a central inverted U-shape. Found at Askeaton, Co. Limerick.

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