Sassanian Carnelian Stamp Seal of a Male Bust


A vibrant carnelian Sassanian ring-shaped stamp seal featuring an engraved oval bezel. A clearly incised bearded, male bust is depicted, facing left. His facial features and the drapery of his clothing are expressed in an iconic Sassanian manner. Behind the male bust, an ear of greenery, possibly a palm branch is engraved, framing the figure. The seal is perforated through the centre for suspension.

Date: Circa 3rd - 5th century AD
Provenance: Ex Robin Symes Ancient Art Mayfair dealership acquired before 1995.
Condition: Very fine condition, minor chips around the perforation.


SKU: HL-221 Category: Tags: ,

Mesopotamia has been regarded as the cradle of ancient glyphic arts, with the earliest cylinder seals proven to have been firstly executed during the Bronze Age, circa 4th Millennium BC. Each following period in Ancient Mesopotamian history contributed in developing styles and techniques of glyphic arts. Sassanian glyptic arts were highly influenced by Mesopotamian traditions and styles, creatively adapted to local tastes. Significant Sassanian inventions, including presenting zoomorphic and figural depictions in solo mark an iconic Sassanian glyptic style that was distinctively known during the 3rd-7th century AD. Presenting a male bust, bordered by a branch of  greenery or bead border, in either a realistic manner or in an abstract form, has been widely considered as one of the most representative decorative patterns of typical Sassanian glyptic arts.

For more about stamp seals, see our relevant blog post: Making their Mark

Weight 1.3 g
Dimensions W 0.5 x H 1.1 cm


Semi-Precious Stones

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