Oval gem with bust of a young man

Roman
Imperial Period
2nd or early 3rd century A.D.


Dimensions

Length x width: 11 x 8 mm (7/16 x 5/16 in.)

Accession Number

62.1145

Medium or Technique

Carnelian

Not On View

Collections

Jewelry, The Ancient World

Classifications

Gems

Dark orange carnelian. Intaglio. Convex front and flat back with inward back bezel. Bust of a young man depicted in profile to the left. He has thick, curly hair indicated by pellets. A series of incised lines around his neck denotes a pallium over a chiton or tunic. He has a large eye, a straight nose, and a small mouth, and the lower eyelid is visible. A retrograde Greek inscription runs counterclockwise starting at the crown of the head and reads KERDONOS, “of Kerdon.” The bust is perhaps a portrait of the gem’s owner. There is a chip in the back behind the omicron, but it does not interfere with the inscription’s legibility.

Inscription

ΚΕΡΔΩΝΟC (counter-clockwise, starting at the crown of the head)

Provenance

By 1940: Dr. L. Lahut Uzman Collection (according to his records: Bought 1940. Shop opposite Pera Palas Istanbul.); 1962: inherited by Mrs. L. Lahut Uzman; December 12, 1962: one of the group of 20 gems (62.1145–62.1164) purchased by MFA from Mrs. L. Lahut Uzman for a total price of $ 2,200-

Credit Line

Theodora Wilbour Fund in memory of Zoë Wilbour