Wonderful Cameo of the Allegory of the Night
  • Material:  Cornelian shell, 22k gold tested.
  • Size:  1 5/8" by 1 3/8" only cameo is 1 2/8" by 1 1/8".
  • Date and origin: Circa 1880 Italy.
  • Conditions:  Mint.
Museum quality shell cameo depicting the Allegory of the Night. This is a cameo of surpassing beauty, carved by an artist. The Goddess Selene is here portrayed with all of her symbols, as the owl holding poppies in its pawns, and  poppies in her hair. Over her veiled head there are Moon and Star which are other two attributes of Selene.   Carving on small surface is more difficult than carving on a larger one shell and sometimes the details are not crisp like the one carved on larger surfaces. This is not that case, all the details are crisply cut and refined. Her face shows serenity and her closed eyes just give you the impression that she’s peacefully sleeping and making lovely dreams. Look at her veil and at its folds, it is just there was a sweet wind who moves it and it seems just real. Even the owl who holds the poppies is amazingly carved, look at its wings, aren’t they superb? This piece is a true beauty, a real artwork. This is another masterly carved cameo for your collection. A very desirable Museum Quality piece.