To enter the British Library's landmark exhibition, visitors assumed King Edgar's place in the famous frontispiece to the 966 New Minster Charter, the image that also serves as the cover to Claire Breay and Joanna Story's intricate catalogue (where Edgar returns to his usual spot on fol. 2v; cat. 112, click link for an image). The male and female saints who ordinarily flank the king appeared as sentinels on the doorframe, ushering visitors into the exhibition space as their right hands holding attributes bent around the corners of the posts, making a gateway of cross and key. Having been greeted by figures due to reappear in the second half of the show, visitors next approached the fifth–sixth-century starting point for the exhibition's long chronological arc. A large photograph of green forest defined the initial installation space, along with a wall map depicting the movements of Picts, Dál Riata, Irish,...

You do not currently have access to this content.