Lot 57: Hellenistic ring with cornelian intaglio probably of Ares (Mars), god of War
November 30, 2016
Boston, MA, USALive Auction
Description: A small Hellenistic hollow gold ring with cornelian intaglio probably of Ares (Mars), god of War, or perhaps an armed nude warrior. He wears a Corinthian helmet, standing in left profile, his right foot perched on a rock as he bends to pick up an Oinochoe (wine pitcher), likely preparing to pour a Libation. Nude warriors can represent Castor and Pollux, twin heroes. Pollux was divine, so he could fight nude, without fear of harm. Castor was killed, and then granted immortality. Alternately, a sort of male beauty/ talent/ athletic competition called a Euandria would have featured tests of military prowess that would have been performed as athletic activities, hence nude. Intact, 1st Century BC, Italy or Eastern Mediterranean.
Ring size is approximate, since ancient rings are not perfectly round.
Please note that this lot has a reserve and is part of a live auction with attending bidders. When you leave a bid in advance of the auction, submit your maximum. Invaluable will bid on your behalf as much as necessary to ensure that you meet the reserve price or that you remain in the lead, up to your maximum. The bidder who has submitted the highest bid wins the lot, provided the bid exceeds the reserve price.
Provenance: Europea private collection of Mr. W., 1950's - 1990's. Acquired by the current owner in Europe, 1998.
Dimensions: 2.3 cm (9/10"), US size 5
Medium: Gold, cornelian