Cupid in a biga (two-horsed chariot)

2006af1544 jpg l

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Acquired in 1869 (the spelunker thinks)

artist
Unknown
attributions_note
bibliography
List of Objects in the Art Division, South Kensington, Acquired During the Year 1869, Arranged According to the Dates of Acquisition. London : Printed by George E. Eyre and William Spottiswoode for H.M.S.O. p. 125. Machell Cox, E., Victoria & Albert Museum Catalogue of Engraved Gems. London, Typescript, 1935, Part 2, Section 2, p.291.
collection_code
SCP
credit
Townshend Bequest
date_end
0100-12-31
date_start
date_text
ca. 200 BC-100 CE (made)
descriptive_line
Cameo depicting Cupid in a biga, oval layered agate of two strata, set in later gold ring. Graeco-Roman, 200 BC-100 CE
dimensions
Width: 21 mm approx., Height: 15.5 mm approx.
edition_number
event_text
exhibition_history
gallery
historical_context_note
Engraved gemstones of all dates were widely produced and collected in Italy in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Many were brought back by British Grand Tourists, and important collections were formed.
historical_significance
history_note
This gem was part of the collection of the Reverend Chauncy Hare Townshend (1798-1868), who bequeathed his important collection to the South Kensington Museum in 1869. Although the gemstone collection is not as comprehensive as that found at the Natural History Museum, it is of particular historic interest as its formation pre-dates the development of many synthetic stones and artificial enhancements. All the stones were mounted as rings before they came to the Museum. Some are held in the Sculpture Section, other more elaborately mounted ones in the Metalwork Section. As well as being a clergyman, collector and dillettante, the Reverend Townshend wrote poetry. He met Robert Southey in 1815 and through him the Wordsworths, the Coleridges and John Clare. He was a friend of Charles Dickens and dedicatee of his novel 'Great Expectations'.
id
82195
label
last_checked
2014-08-30T00:55:02.000Z
last_processed
2014-08-30T00:55:02.000Z
latitude
42.502998
location
In Storage
longitude
12.57341
marks
materials
chalcedony, gemstone, microquartz, layered agate
materials_techniques
Engraved gemstone
museum_number
1794-1869
museum_number_token
17941869
object_number
O106499
object_type
Cameo
on_display
original_currency
original_price
physical_description
Horizontal oval cameo. White over pale brownish grey layered agate. Depicts Cupid, naked and winged, driving a chariot drawn to right by two horses. Set in a later gold ring.
place
Italy
primary_image_id
2006AF1544
production_note
Ring ca. 1830-60 Attribution note: White over pale brownish grey translucent chalcedonies.
production_type
public_access_description
The art of engraving gemstones has been admired since the early days of the Roman empire. It was revived in Europe during the Renaissance, and again in the 18th and 19th centuries. Cameos and intaglios were prized and collected, sometimes as symbols of power and mounted in jewelled settings, sometimes as small objects for private devotion or enjoyment. Chariots driven by a variety of charioteers including Cupid, god of Love, and Nike, god of Victory, were a common subject for Roman cameos.
related_museum_numbers
rights
3
shape
site_code
slug
cupid-in-a-biga-two-cameo-unknown
sys_updated
2013-08-17T00:00:00.000Z
techniques
gem engraving
title
Cupid in a biga (two-horsed chariot)
updated
vanda_exhibition_history
year_end
100
year_start
-205