Among the relics in the treasury of the church of St Catherine at Maaseik in Limburg, Belgium, there are some luxurious embroideries which form part of the so-called casula (probably ‘chasuble’) of Sts Harlindis and Relindis (pls. I–VI). It was preserved throughout the Middle Ages at the abbey church of Aldeneik (which these sister-saints founded in the early eighth century) and was moved to nearby Maaseik in 1571. Although traditionally regarded as the handiwork of Harlindis and Relindis themselves, the embroideries cannot date from as early as their time, and they must have been made in Anglo-Saxon England. Indeed, they represent the earliest surviving examples of the highly prized English art of embroidery which became famous later in the Middle Ages as opus anglicanum.
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