It was thought to have been a
Photo: József Hapák,
data: Ancient Hungarians, Magyar Nemzeti Múzeum 1996
Once Bereg county, today Svaljava, Ukraine, in the valley of the
river Latorca. This is the ancestral road that linked Verecke, the
most important Carpathian pass with Munkács, Beregszász
Discovery of the finding:
On 24, July, 1870., Tivadar Lehoczky a pioneer of archaeological
investigations, while opening a trial trench, found the grave of
a warrior buried with his horse, the fourth Return home age grave
known at the time. Lying beside the skull, there was a silver gilt
tarsoly cover plate, slightly bent. Lehoczky interpreted it as a
headgear finial. He also noted the remains of felt, hair or some
kind of fur beside the plate.
Silver gilt foreplate.
A fluted ribbon border frames the plate. The pre-drawn lines of
the design were chased using a tracer. The plate is entirely flat.
The so-called triple dot motif was a distinctive element in the
ornamental repertoire of a Sogdian workshop in Central Asia. With
the row of cast, imitation hanging tassels at the top of the plate
the craftsman possibly wanted to translate the appliqué ornament
of leather tarsoly-s into metal. The background of the design was
lavishly gilded, the design was left in the silver-white colour
of the metal itself. Certain details of the pattern can be made
out on the reverse of the plate. Washers were placed under the ends
of the rivets in order to attach the plate securely to the felt
Hapák, data: Ancient Hungarians, Magyar Nemzeti Múzeum
József Huszka: History of the Magyar Turanian Ornamentation
The heads of the five silver rivets recall three types of palmette
leaves. The design recalls the ornamentation of the tarsoly plate
of Galgóc. The trefoil palmettes,
arranged into three vertical rows, form a reticulated pattern,
but the workmanship differs. The space between the horizontal
leaves of the palmettes and the frame of the vertical leaf was
filled with dense hatching. The inward-twirling tip of the palmette
and the lines of the veins terminate in a punched dot, while the
veins of the horizontal leaves often terminate in three dots.
This is the so-called “triple dot” motif. The infinity
of the scrollwork pattern is reflected in its termination: the
lowermost palmettes are linked to the two outer rows. One unique
ornamental element of the Szolyva tarsoly plate is the row of
imitation hanging tassels at the top. Four cast silver mounts
of three ‘tassels’ and one-half of a tassel mount
were riveted to the ribbon border. The ‘tassel’ mounts
have a beaded horizontal band at the top. The ornamentation of
the plate is an analogue to the one of the Eperjeske
Signs of extensive wear and the damage indicate that it was in
use for a considerable length of time. The tarsoly bearing this
plate must have been made of felt. This would give the reason
for the application of the row of imitation tassels at the top
of the plate.
Magyar Nemzeti Múzeum, Budapest - 148/1870.5.
Pulszky 1891, 14, 19.; Hampel 1900, 707-708.; 1904, 110-112.;
1905, II. 593. III, Taf. 400/3, 401/1.; Lehoczky 1912, 84.; Fettich
1935, 15.; 1937, 78, LIV-LV. t.; 194, 12-13, 8. t.; László
1943, 23, VI. t.; 1970, picture No. 64, 169.; 1970a, Fig. 169.;
Dienes 1970, 38.; 1972, 60, 4. t.; 1972a, Fig. 4.; 1975, 97.;
1976, 101.; Kresz 1978, 344-346.; 1979, 62-66.
The provenance of the tarsoly finding can be found
on this map detail of Bereg county from 1904?.
Source: Map-collection of the National Széchényi Library
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