Dating to ca. 100 AD, this museum-quality pair of ancient Roman silver earrings of Eros, the God of Love, comes directly from my personal collection of ancient jewelry! Please take the time to view all of the enlargements and to read the full description; it will be well worth your time!
I acquired these beautiful earrings from a very reputable, UK-based antiquities dealer in 1998, and have decided to offer them for the first time on Ruby Lane. This pair of earrings reveals the high level of artistry achieved by lapidaries in the Roman world, and have survived the past 2000 years in stunning, intact, mint condition!
Each earring represents the full-length figure of Eros, and just LOOK at the incredible detail! These earrings, like most in the Roman era, are small, but the figure is fully cast in "3-D" from the top of his head to the tips of the his toes! These earrings would have been crafted for a Roman lady of great wealth and social standing, and they are no less wearable today!
Eros is depicted in the nude, with a garland of flowers draped from his shoulders to his waist. He has curly hair, tiny, outspread wings, and stands with his hands on his hips. His legs and feet are curved around to form the hoop of the earring. His navel and even his "privates" are visible; the Romans had no modern scruples concerning nudity. Each of these earrings is a tiny masterpiece; they are nearly identical, but as they were wrought by hand, each shows tiny differentiations.
This astounding pair of earrings also feature a classical beaded wirework rosette at the terminal. The backs of the earrings are crafted from tightly-twisted silver wires soldered together at the tips. The original finding loop is still intact on each earring, but these jewels have been gently opened so that one can wear them today. Please note, however, that these earrings are thicker than modern ear wires, and require that the ear lobes be somewhat stretched to accommodate the hoop. Alternatively, these earrings could easily be suspended from secure jump rings and attached to modern silver ear wires by an experienced lapidary without harming the value or integrity of these original jewels.
These earrings measure 5/8" long and 5 mm wide. Together, they weigh 4.1 grams. In the photos, one of the earrings appears slightly more gold in color than the other, but this is due to the lighting; the earrings are the same shade of deep, warm silver. They have been professionally cleaned of burial encrustation, but retain much of their early patina. These earrings should NOT be polished; their patina is a part of their history, and to do so would harm their integrity and devalue them greatly.
Eros earrings were popular throughout the Roman Empire; for reference on identical jewels, please see Catherine Johns' "The Jewellery of Roman Britain," chapter 6 (U. of Michigan Press: 1996). Wrought in gold and silver, they were worn by the Roman elite both for their beauty and the ancient belief that Eros would protect them in their interests of the heart.
Here is a very rare opportunity to acquire a genuine pair of silver Roman Eros earrings in MINT condition. There are no losses nor repairs to these jewels, and with proper care and storage, they will last another two millenia! These earrings will be sold with a COA and valuation for your insurance purposes.
If you collect the BEST in ancient jewels, these earrings will make an wonderful and wearable investment-quality addition to your collection. They would also make the ULTIMATE gift for any lady fascinated with the Roman world; what better way to celebrate than with the Roman god of love? Or better yet, treat yourself this year; you deserve it!
LAYAWAY IS AVAILABLE ON THIS ITEM! Terms are as follows: 30% down, with 4 months to pay the balance. If you are interested in layaway, please do not be shy; just ask!
Your Specialists in Fine Jewelry and Decorative Arts from Antiquity - 1900. Est. 1987.
I WILL BE OUT OF THE OFFICE From 10/5-10/25. Orders May Be Placed and Paid For, But Will Not Be Shipped Until 10/26. Thanks!