Scaraboid gem with Danae receiving a shower of gold

Early Classical Period
480–450 B.C.


Length: 20 mm (13/16 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


On View

Anne and Blake Ireland Gallery (Gallery 210A)


Jewelry, The Ancient World


Scarabs and scaraboids

Intaglio. Pierced for stringing (vertical). Motif oriented vertically. Danae in profile to the left, wearing long dress with long, vertical folds, and a shorter mantle. She stands in front of bed. Her hair is bound up in a cap (sakkos). At left, bed post, carved with curls and lines and topped with two pillows; bed frame extends to the right. Four rain drops fall into Danae’s hands. Hatched border.


By date unknown: Count Michel Tyszkiewicz Collection; 1898: auction of the M. Tyszkiewicz Collection, Hotel des Commissaires-Priseurs, 9 rue Drouot, Paris, June 8-10, lot 267 (said to have been found in Attica); by 1898: with Edward Perry Warren (according to Warren's records: said to have been acquired by Tyszkiewicz from Rhousopoulos); 1898: purchased by MFA from Edward Perry Warren for $ 69,618.13 (this figure is the total price for MFA 98.641-98.940)

Credit Line

Henry Lillie Pierce Fund