This is an ancient Roman cameo of a lady, it dates to the 3rd century A.D. The blue and white of the hardstone agate, is simply cut with a long and slender female profile. In my opinion, the head bears a good resemblance of Empress Sallustia Orbiana, who was the wife of Emperor Severus Alexander from AD 225 to 227. She was known for her beauty, which was captured in multiple works of art. A victim of the jealousy of Julia Mamaea, the emperor's mother, Orbiana was divorced and exiled to Libya in 227. Such a gold pendant would have been worn as a show of support and loyalty to the Empress, likely on a gold chain. This example is intact and in good excavated condition, rare and very nice!
OBJECT: Cameo pendant
DATE: c. 3rd century A.D.
MATERIAL: Agate & Gold
SIZE: 21mm x 9mm x 4mm
WEIGHT: 0.8 grams
PROVENANCE: Ex. Mayfair Collection, London.
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