Bracelet with a basket flanked by snakes

A gold bracelet composed of a gold band studded with two outer rows of pearls. The projecting central element, a basket (kalathos), is decorated with cabochon emeralds and flanked by coiling snakes. Snakes were regarded as protective spirits, associated with healing (Asklepios) by the Greeks and the Romans. In an Egyptian context, the snake was often associated with Agathodaimon ("the Good Spirit"). One of a pair with 1981.287.


By 1980: with Holger Termer, Friedensweg 22, 2000 Hamburg 52, Germany (as ex Kunst der Antike: Ausstellung, Nov. 19-Dec. 19, 1980, Hamburg, no. 94); September 16, 1981: purchased by MFA from Holger Termer

Credit Line

Classical Department Exchange Fund

Bracelet with a basket flanked by snakes

  • Greek or Roman, Late Hellenistic or Early Imperial Period, about 40–20 B.C.
Place of Manufacture
possibly Egypt
Height x diameter: 6.4 x 6.2 cm (2 1/2 x 2 7/16 in.)
Medium or Technique
Gold, emeralds, and pearls (modern)
Jewelry / Adornment
Accession Number
On view
Gems and Jewelry of the Ancient Mediterranean Gallery, Vance Wall Foundation - 210A