In the woods and meadows

Modern gold ring with antique roman intaglio, late imperial period / around 1990

Not only gods and emperors were depicted in gems in antiquity. Numerous stone carvings still reveal the interest of the people of that time in scenes from everyday life. We encounter farmers and hunters, work in the forest as well as in the fields and on the coast, captured in no medium of hard stone and handed down to this day. The intaglio here shows a man wearing a helmet in a landscape. He appears to be leaning against a tree, with a sword or quiver of arrows in front of him. Presumably it is a hunter waiting for his hunting luck. Especially in the late imperial period many such representations are known, Erika Zwierlein-Diehl: Antike Gemmen und ihr Nachleben, Berlin/New York 2007, 197ff. has described some corresponding scenes of the so-called hunting dog master of the 2nd century AD (see our last illustration). They help to date the present stone to that time as well. The oval, brown-orange agate is set in a simple modern ring of gold and can thus protectively accompany woman or man. We discovered it in the Rhineland.

To possess antique cameos and gems was the claim of almost all great collections for centuries: We find spectacular pieces as well in the Green Vault in Dresden, in the treasury of Rudolf II, up to the great private collections like that of Baron Stosch in later times. The 18th and 19th centuries produced numerous large imprint collections of antique seal stones and gems, which represent the antique imagery of glyptic almost in its entirety. Thus they were not least an expression of a humanistic education. 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 carved stones as well as engraved shells from their educational journeys in order to enjoy the stories that the shells could tell. The art of gem-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 professional training centre in the world for gem-cutters, although unfortunately the mythological theme has almost been lost as a subject.

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.