This is an ancient Roman hardstone intaglio, dating to the 2nd century A.D. It is superbly cut on a dark green heliotrope gemstone, with a female portrait of a goddess (Ceres of Venus?) she also shares similarities with Empress Crispina. Such a gems would have once been set into a gold or silver signet ring, used as a private signature to authenticate letters and transactions. Today this ancient gem has survived intact and in excellent excavated condition.
DATE: c. 2nd century A.D.
SIZE: 15.8mm x 12mm x 2mm
WEIGHT: 0.6 grams
PROVENANCE: Formerly in a Private Collection, Ontario, Canada
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