Lava cameo of Cibele (Cybele)
Overall: 4 x 3.3 x 0.8 cm (1 9/16 x 1 5/16 x 5/16 in.)
Medium or Technique
Not On View
This unmounted cameo is a high-relief, profile bust of the goddess Cibele (Cybele), an Anatolian goddess. Purchased by Edward Gleason (1829-1863?), son of Boston silversmith Roswell Gleason and Rebecca Vose Gleason, during a honeymoon visit to Italy where lava cameos were popular souvenir items available at Pompeii. They were often bought unmounted to be set by local jewelers back in the U.S.
"Cibele" in engraved cursive script on reverse
20th century, purchased by Edward Gleason in Italy and given to Mrs. Frank Bowker; late 1960's, gift of Mrs. Frank Bowker to her great-niece, Elizabeth C. Heide, Marblehead, MA; 2012, gift of Elizabeth C. Heide to the MFA. (Accession date: September 26, 2012)
Gift of Elizabeth C. Heide in memory of Mrs. Frank Bowker