Early medieval art: c. 500-800 C.E.

In the fifth century C.E., people from tribes called Angles, Saxons and Jutes left their homelands in northern Europe to look for a new home. They knew that the Romans had recently left the green land of Britain unguarded, so they sailed across the channel in small wooden boats. The Britons did not give in without a fight, but after many years the invaders managed to overcome them and were to rule for over 500 years.

Crossbow brooch, c. 430, Metropolitan Museum
These ornate brooches were trendy accessories in the 5th and 6th centuries. Pin, body, and catch form a “crossbow.”