Portrait of youth

First class antique intaglio of the Roman Imperial period in a red gold ring

A young face, beautiful, relaxed and seemingly carefree is shown to us in this ring. It is cut in stone, in a red carnelian, and rendered in profile - and our view of the youth leads us back into the past, for the young man depicted here lived some 2000 years ago. In Roman times, intaglios like this one were created for a wide variety of occasions. People had portraits of themselves carved 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 from the Roman Imperial period could have been such a gift. The exceptional richness of detail and its brilliant technical realization suggest that it was created in the Roman imperial period. In many details, the portrait is reminiscent of depictions of the youthful Caesar Caligula, as they have been handed down through marble busts and coin portraits. The enclosed ace coin of the emperor from the year 37 or 38 AD, for example, shows many parallels in details such as the neckline and the course of the hair, e.g. the sideburns. At this time Gaius Caesar Augustus Germanicus, who was called Caligula only after his death, was 25 years old. The carnelian came to us with its version of classicism around 1800. The simple ring band made of high quality gold with the two decorative arches to the right and left of the stone setting was created in our workshop according to models of the same period. So the gem can now be worn again safely and with pleasure.

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.