Roman Gold Earrings with Garnets

£ 800.00

An extremely fine matching pair of  Ancient Roman gold earrings, each featuring a delicately twisted gold hoop tapered at the end which encloses the earring by hooking through a loop. Granulation has been applied along the lower part of the hoop with an additional drop of gold embellished with further granulation. The earrings display a central medallion composed of a cabochon garnet inset, her in place by a gold cell of gold granules. The earrings are a beautiful example of the refinement of Ancient Roman goldsmith art.

Date: Circa 1st-3rd century AD
Provenance: Ex Important Private Japanese collection, deceased, 1970-2015
Condition: Complete and intact. These earrings are suitable for modern wear with modern hook or stud applied. Please consult a professional jeweller for any alterations.


SKU: LD-223 Category: Tag:

As in many ancient societies, jewellery was an important social marker used to demonstrate wealth. Following the spread of the Roman Empire, Roman jewellery became more and more elaborate in the designs and in the materials used, such as garnet. In Antiquity, garnet was very popular due to its deep colouration and for the meaning that was attributed to it. The word garnet originates from the Latin word granatus translating to seed or grain. In Ancient Greek and Roman mythology, Hades gave pomegranate seeds to his lover Persephone, as a token of safety, while she was leaving the underworld to join her mother Demeter in the human world. The semi-precious stone, recalling the colour and the shape of the pomegranate seed, became a typical gift exchanged between separated lovers.

To discover more about gemstones in Antiquity, please visit our relevant blog post: The History and Mythology of Gemstones in Ancient Jewellery.

Weight 5.12 g
Dimensions W 2.4 x H 3.5 cm


Semi-Precious Stones


Reference: For a similar item, The British Museum, item 1981,0905.14-15.