- Material: Sardonyx Shell, 15K gold tested .
- Size: 2 3/32" by 1 27/32".
- Date and Origin: Circa 1860, Italy. According to the dealer of this cameo, the brooch was originally made for, and worn by Queen Victoria. The brooch was subsequently a gift to one of her ladies in waiting after 50 years of service, and has remained in the family since. I know the name of the lady in waiting who had the cameo as a gift but for a privacy question I'll not reveal it here on the web. For any other information please contact me.
- Conditions: Shell is in excellent condition, a few lines, natural from the shell, that have become a bit darker with the age. An hairline just at the top of the head of the goddess. A minor loss on the enamel, in the inside part of the frame, see pictures.
More than Museum Quality cameo depicting the Goddess Diana. This subject really jumps out from the shell. Finding a front face cameo of Goddess Diana is rare and harder is finding one in a so perfect condition. Everything is perfectly carved and so realistic. Her main attributes, the bow and arrows, are shown. This is a real work of art, a sculpturesque cameo, in-fact it is just like a sculpture. Look at her face, what a work of art, she really seems to be alive. The frame is another work of art, finely worked and engraved. Thinking that Queen Victoria has personally worn this piece makes me amazed. The pictures really don't give any justice to this stunning piece, it is a very hard subject to take pictures of, but I can assure you all that this is a piece that can take your breath away. This is another masterly carved cameo. A very desirable collectors piece, rare and museum quality cameo.
A bit of History:
In Roman mythology, Diana was the goddess of the hunt, being associated with wild animals and woodland, and also of the moon In literature she was the equivalent of the Greek goddess Artemis, the Hellenic goddess of forests, hills, virginity/fertility, and the hunt and was often depicted as a huntress carrying a bow and arrows. Diana was worshipped in ancient Roman religion Along with her main attributes, Diana was an emblem of chastity Oak groves were especially sacred to her. According to mythology, Diana was born with her twin brother Apollo on the island of Delos, daughter of Jupiter and Latona. Diana made up a trinity with two other Roman deities: Egeria the water nymph, her servant and assistant midwife; and Virbius, the woodland god.