Byzantine Ring with Christian Chi Rho Intaglio


A Byzantine solid gold ring, featuring a banded oval loop, ending in thee gold granules, and a finely carved silver bezel. The bezel displays the early Christian Chi Rho symbol, in a relatively unusual variation, featuring an additional horizontal line through the intersection of the Greek letters. UK ring size J.


Date: Circa 9th-12th century AD
Condition: Excellent condition. Some very light weathering to the surface of the intaglio, but visibility of the symbol is not affected.


SKU: FP-179 Category: Tags: ,

The Chi Rho symbol was formed by overlaying the Greek capital letters chi and rho (X and P) so that the vertical stroke of the rho passes through the centre of the chi. These characters were used as they were the first two characters of the Greek word ΧΡΙΣΤΟΣ (Khristos; or Christ). The symbol was adopted for use as a military standard by Constantine the Great, and from then onwards became part of the official imperial insignia of the Byzantine Empire.

To find out more about the Byzantine world please see our relevant blog post: The Byzantine Empire: Art and Christianity

Weight 7 g
Dimensions W 1.8 cm




Reference: For a similar item, The British Museum, item 1984,1001.1.

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