A new day dawns

Large shell cameo with depiction of the aurora in gold, around 1850

An unusual cameo with a depiction of the Roman goddess of dawn Aurora is here set in gold and wearable as a brooch. In ancient mythology Aurora (Greek Eos) is considered the sister of the sun god Sol and the moon goddess Luna and is the personification of the dawning day. Thus she stands for the new beginning and confidence. In a very beautiful, detailed cut, the curved, two-coloured shell was used here to represent the goddess. Laurel in her hair and a confident look make the depiction light and cheerful. An eagle with a cornucopia is assigned to her as an attribute and stands for the lightness of new beginnings and the promise of a happy future. The present cameo is without doubt a souvenir of a Grand Tour of the years around 1850. A must for every collection of mythological cameos, as well as for all lovers of the mythology of antiquity!

For centuries, possessing antique cameos was the claim of almost all great collections of decorative arts and cabinets of curiosities, from the Green Vault in Dresden and the treasury of Rudolf II to large private collections such as that of Baron von Stosch in later times. The 18th and 19th centuries produced numerous large imprint collections of antique sealstones and cameos, which were able to represent the ancient imagery of the antique glyptic almost in its entirety, as they were also an expression of a humanistic education. Often figures of the Olympian heaven of gods or mythological scenes were the subject of the representations. Of particular importance for the transmission of stone and shell carvings north of the Alps have always been travellers to Italy, who brought home impressions and cut stones as well as engraved shells from their educational journeys in order to enjoy the stories that the shells could tell. The art of cameo-cutting has survived to this day in Italy, especially in the Bay of Naples, where it has been passed down from generation to generation. Today, the Scuola dei Cammei in Torre del Greco is the only large-scale training centre for cameo-cutters in Italy in the world, although unfortunately the mythological theme has been lost.

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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.

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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.