This is an ancient Roman silver intaglio ring, dating to the 2nd - 3rd century AD. It is set with the original intaglios, cut with a representation of a Dolphin and a pair of wheat stalks. The ring is designed to represent two joined rings, possibly indicative of a marriage ring (which had a variety of forms throughout the Roman period).
Dolphins were associated with Neptune (god of the sea) and of Venus (goddess of love), they were considered friendly messengers from the deep, bringing gifts and messages from the gods. The second intaglio depicting wheat stalks may refer to growth, fertility, and union with the stalks (as with the rings) being joined. It is a nice and hefty ring, designed to be worn and to get one noticed! A good original example in excellent condition.
OBJECT: Intaglio Ring
DATE: c. 2nd - 3rd century AD
MATERIAL: Silver carnelian and sard gemstone
RING SIZE: 6 1/4 (US) M 1/2 (UK)
SIZE: 23mm x 23mm x 5mm x 12mm (intaglio 7mm x 5mm)
WEIGHT: 12.5 grams
PROVENANCE: Ex. European Private Collection.
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