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The Clonmacnoise Crozier is a late-11th-century Insular crozier that would have been used as a ceremonial staff for bishops and high-status abbots. Discovered before 1821 in the monastery of Clonmacnoise in County Offaly, Ireland, it consists of a shaft and curved crook, decorated with elements of Viking art. It may have been associated with Saint Ciarán of Clonmacnoise (died c. 549), and was perhaps commissioned by Tigernach Ua Braín (died 1088), Abbot of Clonmacnoise, but little is known of its origin or rediscovery. Largely intact, it is one of the best preserved pieces of Insular metalwork. The antiquarian and collector Henry Charles Sirr, Lord Mayor of Dublin, held it until the Royal Irish Academy acquired his collection on his death in 1844. It was transferred to the archaeology branch of the National Museum of Ireland on Kildare Street on the branch's foundation in 1890. The archaeologist and art historian Griffin Murray has described it as "one of [the] finest examples of early medieval metalwork from Ireland". (Full article...)
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