Wednesday, July 6, 2016

The Umutkor collar of Kyrgyzstan

In late 2014 Sotheby’s auctioned a 5th-century Eastern Hunnic gold collar.

The Umutkor collar sold for £242,500 ($380,215) in London. The royal collar and beads set with garnets and glass belonged to Sansyzbay Umutkor, who bought it circa 1890-1895. The collar was handed down by family descent until it was exported to Bratislava, Slovakia, in 2013. Authorities of Kyrgyzstan claimed the collar had been taken from the country illegally.
The previously unrecorded fifth century gold royal collar is from the time of Attila the Hun. The magnificent collar would have been worn only by those of the highest social status.

Attila and his Huns are seen in the West as barbarians. In the late fourth and fifth centuries they viciously subjected all of the European tribes and forced Rome and Constantinople to pay vast sums of gold just to keep the Hunnic horde out of their cities.
Attila led many military raids on both the Eastern and Western Roman Empires provoking what became known as the Barbarian Invasions, a large movement of Germanic populations that greatly accelerated the fall of Rome. He is considered by most Hungarians as the founder of the country.

According to ancient records, Attila died in his palace across the Danube after a feast celebrating his marriage to a beautiful young gothic princess named Ildico. Legend says that his men diverted a section of a river, buried the coffin under the riverbed, and were then killed to keep the exact location a secret.