Book chapter

A Jacobean Shell for Šahuk, “Servant of God”

BHAP-HA+SCANT

  • 2023
Published in:
  • Armenia through the Lens of Time. Multidisciplinary Studies in Honour of Theo Maarten van Lint / Alpi, Federico ; Meyer, Robin. - 2023, p. 56-79
English The Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg hosts a late medieval shell object with silver gilt decorations and a coin attached inside, whose Armenian inscription mentions a certain “Šahuk, servant of God”. Discovered in the late 19th century in the Ukrainian port city of Berdyansk, the object has attracted little scholarly attention until the 2000s, when it was included in several splendid exhibitions, all dedicated to the material culture of the so-called Pax Mongolica. The present article discusses the discovery and acquisition history of Šahuk’s shell and proceeds to analyse the emblematic use of similar shell tokens within the context of medieval pilgrimage practices, concluding with a general reconstruction of the Armenian pilgrimage tradition to Santiago de Compostela. It is with this renowned Galician site that I propose to associate the functional and historical contexts of Šahuk’s shell, whose silver additions were likely produced in Cilician Armenia.
Faculty
Faculté des lettres et des sciences humaines
Department
Département d'histoire de l'art et d'archéologie
Language
  • English
Classification
Art history
License
CC BY-NC-ND
Open access status
green
Identifiers
Persistent URL
https://folia.unifr.ch/unifr/documents/324650
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