Spool earring

Italic, Etruscan
6th century B.C.


Overall: 1.5 x 1 x 0.8 cm (9/16 x 3/8 x 5/16 in.) Overall (with 95.90): 2.8 gm (0.01 lb.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


On View

Anne and Blake Ireland Gallery (Gallery 210A)


Jewelry, The Ancient World


Earrings, flares, plugs, studs

“A baule” or spool earrings consist of sheet metal rounded at one end and rolled into a spool. A hook at one end of the earring either passed through the earlobe or a suspension hoop in the ear.
The upper zone is pediment-shaped with addorsed sphinxes as decoration; their wings form a peak. A row of small, flat circles of filigree wire is placed above the wings.
The central zone is decorated with a rosette in each corner, each surrounded by a border of plain filigree wire. The rosettes all are made up of open hoops of filigree wire and decorated with a central bead. A larger rosette of this type is placed in a cup-shaped setting. Smaller cup-shaped rosettes are set in the interstices.
The lower zone is divided into three long rows separated by ridges.


By 1894: with Edward Perry Warren (according to Warren's records: Said to have been found together [with 95.87 and 95.90] at Mytilene. 1894.); 1895: purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren for $ 29,857.37 (this figure is the total price for MFA 95.9-95.174)

Credit Line

Catharine Page Perkins Fund