Allegory of the Day and Night
 
 
  • Material: Sardonyx Shell, 15 k gold tested.
  • Size: 2 5/8" by 2 2/8 "  only cameo is 2 2/8 " by 1 7/8 ".
  • Date and Origin: Circa 1850 Italy.
  • Conditions: Mint. Just for accuracy I have to mention that the shell has a smallest white spot just above the Day's head, it was caused by the soldering of the outer frame to the inner one, fire heat can discolours the shell when put at strict contact.
Museum Quality Cameo carved in very high-relief to depict the Allegory of the Day and the Night. Look at the high-relief carving, a true masterpiece for a subject which was very popular but at the same time rare to find so finely carved. The two Goddesses are just at two opposite sides, the Day, Eos, has open eyes looking at the light of the new day, her head is lifted up to look at the light of sun and her sweet expression seems to communicate good feelings and sensations for something of new which is coming. I can feel hope in her look, hope that a new day can bring only positive things, as we all hope everyday. The Night, Selene, is instead sleeping, a deserved sleep which relaxes body and soul. Her face is sweet and relaxed, her head is down and her eyes are closed to welcome the dreams that night brings. Everything is masterly carved and detailed. This cameo is a real artwork. This is one of the most detailed cameos I have ever handled.
The Day is symbolized by the dove and by the flowers on her head.
The Night by a sleeping woman wearing a crown of opium flowers on her head, the moon, the star and the owl as well with the opium in its talons.
The superb frame in massive gold, is finely chiselled and in perfect condition. The frame is original in all parts.