Oblong gem with a wedding procession and preparation of the nuptial bed

Italic, Etruscan
Archaic Period
550–500 B.C.


Length: 17 mm (11/16 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


Not On View


Jewelry, The Ancient World



Translucent, orange carnelian. Oblong gem with two slightly convex faces engraved in intaglio separated by a vertical wall; pierced lengthwise. Face A: bride and groom in a chariot drawn by four horses and driven by an attendant on either side. A flute-player (aulete) leads the procession while a woman carrying a basket (cista) on her head follows behind the chariot. Face B: an attendant prepares the nuptial bed in an architectural structure with a pediment and acroteria (temple?). A tall vessel with volutes and a bird are placed next to the bed. Outside, on the right, stand a couple—the man wearing a pointed headdress and holding a branch or palm—and on the left a woman. Small chips missing near the stringholes.


By 1926: with Edward Perry Warren; loaned to MFA by Edward Perry Warren, April 5, 1926 (as 39.26); purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren, November 17, 1927, for $ 161,000.00 (this figure is the total price for MFA 27.647-27.761)

Credit Line

Francis Bartlett Donation of 1912