Rare Ancient Roman Era Silver Zoomorphic Finger Ring Circa: 2nd Century
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Rare Ancient Roman Era Silver Zoomorphic Finger Ring Circa: 2nd Century:
Genuine and original conservedEuropean Roman Era(2nd Century AD) Silver AlloyZoomorphic Ring. The bezel of this rare example is formed from a trio of silver alloystrands cast as snakes, two serpent heads are observed with scale decoration seen. The ring has received light cleaning however, most of the original silver oxide patina remains to the reverse of the bezel and frame. The zoomorphic bezel details are complete with the two snake heads remaining intact. Surface striation or scratch marks are observed and are in keeping with the age of the ring: UK size T, US size10 at9 grams- very fine original condition - please see images- Our GradeA see notes below: Similar in design to plate IV: Ref: P.52, Ref 87 - Victoria and Albert Catalogue of Rings .. See also Nigel Mills Celtic and Roman Artefacts: P.101 Ref: RB308 [M183]: for similar zoomorphic subject design: PrivateFrench Collection 2009: The Snake image may have association with the Greek but later Romancult who worshiped Glycon the Snake God - see notes:
By 160, the worship of Glycon had undoubtedly spread beyond the Aegean. An inscription from Antioch of that date records a slogan, "Glycon protect us from the plague-cloud" that is consistent with the description we have from Lucian. Also in that year the governor of Asia, Publius Mummius Sisenna Rutilianus, declared himself protector of Glycon's oracle. The governor later married Alexander's daughter. According to Lucian, another Roman governor, of Cappadocia, was led by Glycon's oracle to his death in Armenia, and even the Emperor himself was not immune to the cult: Marcus Aurelius sought prophesies from Alexander and his snake god. Meanwhile, Abonutichus, a small fishing village before the arrival of the cult, became an important town and accepted another name, Ionopolis. It is uncertain what role the popularity of Glycon played in the rise of the city. In short order Glycon worship was found throughout the vast area between the Danube and Euphrates. Beginning late in the reign of Antoninus Pius and continuing into the 3rd century, official Roman coins were struck in honor of Glycon, attesting his popularity. While the cult gradually lost followers after the death of its leader in c.170, it survived for at least a hundred years thereafter, with Alexander being incorporated into its mythology as a grandson of Asclepius. Some evidence indicates the cult survived into the 4th century.
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