This book examines the remarkable Velestino hoard, found in Thessaly in the s, and analyses the light that this collection of artifacts sheds on a poorly studied period of Byzantine history, and on largely neglected aspects of Byzantine civilization.
Many collections of Byzantine gold- and silverware, such as Vrap and Seuso, have been surrounded by controversy. None, however, has been under more suspicion than the Velestino hoard, particularly with regards to its authenticity. The hoard contains no gold and no silver, and is in fact a collection of bronze and leaden plaques, some with human, and others with animal or geometric representations.
The authors examine three distinct aspects of the hoard: the iconography of its components, the method of its production, and the function of those components. The conclusions that they reached provide valuable new insights into eighth-century Byzantine culture.
Relics and Wonders: Lombard's Amulet
Skilled at combat and possessing certain abilities that are beyond the range of the average human, Draygon is tough but not heartless. He may slash through man-wolves and other beastly creatures without hesitation but he always remembers those who help him along the way. Thanks in large part to a conniving king and a desire to do what is right, Draygon becomes involved with the epic of the kidnapped girl and the danger that surrounds her.
Navigating this world of elves, gnomes, dwarves, and a host of other creatures, some magical, some not, can be challenging even for devoted fans of fantasy. Allegiances are often shifty and it is not always easy to tell who is on the side of good and who is on the side of evil.
While it is refreshing to see characterizations that go beyond black and white, it can make for a murky storyline that requires careful attention. Upon reuniting with Ness, his longtime accomplice, Zekiel reveals that both of them are wanted for murder and being pursued by Draygon—a dangerous and vengeful bounty hunter feared throughout the land and branded as one who always catches his prey.
In a world populated by vampires, werewolves, wizards, dwarves, and elves among dozens of other enchanted beings, the missing amulet places mankind in danger from a kingdom on the brink of war, and leaves Draygon to decide which to fulfill: his lust for vengeance or peace for the entire human race.
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