The Longobards in Naples
NAPLES - Why hold an exhibiton about the Longobards in
Yet they were in southern
They interacted with
The well-mounted exhibition, which has been hailed as the most important ever on the Longobards, benefits from the great progress in studies about these invaders in the past decade.
The Longobards ( the ‘long beards’ whose name has determined that of
The exhibition is in darkened rooms where the weapons, buckles, jewellery, garments, coins, domestic utensils documents, inscriptions on stone, bas relief sculptures- most strikingly of animals- are spotlighted. This dark-light contrast creates the effect of a different world, but also problems because the captions are difficult to read. There should be an annual Italian prize for legible captions in exhibitions because often they are ill-served by the labelling.
The exhibition is divided into 8 sections which follow a chronological order with attention to the economy, religion, the role of Pavia as capital, the Longobard writing which began after they reached Italy, relations with the Carolingian empire, the Longobards in southern Italy and, finally, its monasteries, such as Montecassino, which are one reason why southern Italy is the richest source of Longobard remains.
The exhibition answers some queries about the Longobards but raises other – a Longobard book of laws is displayed which inspires questions about how it differed from the previous law and how extensively it was applied.
The exhibition was first held in