Antique intaglio of the muse Erato, 1st/2nd century AD, in a modern gold ring
In Roman times, intaglios such as this one were created for a wide variety of occasions. People had portraits of themselves or patron saints cut in stone to give to friends and relatives. Scenes from mythology and representations of the gods served as protective amulets. But intaglios were also created as precious gifts by emperors to honour soldiers, civil servants or deserving citizens for loyal service. This gem, which is about 2,000 years old, could have been such a gift and perhaps even a romantic one! Depicted is one of the nine muses. Her lyre, the ancient stringed instrument, identifies the standing lady as Erato, the muse of love poetry, dance and song. According to the tradition, her music should awaken desire. And indeed Erato's lips are open as if to sing! The Roman carnelian with its setting originally came to us as part of a bracelet of the years around 1800 from a Cologne collection. The simple ring band made of high-carat gold with the two decorative arches to the right and left of the stone setting was created in our workshop based on models from the same period. Thus the gem, which originated as a ring stone in Roman times, can now once again be worn on the finger with pleasure. And: one could certainly have worse companions than the muse Erato, who is above all the patron saint of lovers!
One of the most beautiful and exciting fields in the field of jewellery is the collecting of antique intaglios and cameos. These portraits, cut in hard stone, recessed or raised, offer such a wealth of motifs that a whole world of objects reveals itself to every interest. There are cameos with portraits of famous people and heroes, representations of deities and mythical events, memories of personal experiences and narrative scenes from everyday life. As gems were widespread as jewellery in antiquity and every citizen probably wore (and gave as a gift) such stones, a relatively large number of original pieces have been preserved outside museums. We are always particularly pleased to be able to offer such gems.
We want you to be 100% satisfied! For that reason, we examine, describe and photograph all of our jewellery with the utmost care.
You can rely on our years of experience in the trade and our expertise as a professional art historians for reviews of the antique jewellery. As a member of various trader organisations and the British Society of Jewellery Historians, we remain committed to the highest possible degree of accuracy. In our descriptions, we always also indicate any signs of age and defects and never hide them in our photos – this saves you from any unpleasant surprises when your package arrives.
Should you for some reason not be satisfied, please don’t hesitate to contact us so that we can begin to find a solution together. In any case, you can return any article within 30 days and we will refund the full purchase price.
We want you to be 100% satisfied! That’s why we examine, describe and photograph all our jewellery with the utmost care.
If for any reason you are still not satisfied, contact us and we will find a mutual solution immediately. Regardless, you can return any item within 30 days and we will refund you the full purchase price.