Artisans used their artistic skill to create elegant necklaces, bracelets, brooches, strap mountings and buckles out of gold and silver. These artefacts gave status to leaders and aristocrats and the goldsmithery was also present in rituals. Many of the products were of such high quality that they are difficult to copy, even today.
The artisans mastered everything from casting and smithery to the gilding of bronze and filigree technique. For the precision work, carried out in gloomy interiors, it may have been that lenses ground from rock crystal were used as magnifying glasses.
The craftspeople often worked in dangerous, unhealthy conditions. This has made researchers ponder over whether they belonged to the free or the unfree in society. It may be that craftspeople wandered from place to place, offering their services to whoever paid the most. Did that mean, therefore, that they did have some degree of personal freedom after all?