Found in France, and going back to the Roman conquest, this is the most exquisite bronze "Bas Relief" showing 3 women carrying offerings to the Temple.
The plaque, circa 200 AD, (but could be earlier) is small, but not miniature: 2 7/8" by 2 1/8". (7.25 cm) by (5.25 cm)
The subject, which is fairly realistic with a lot of details, is still very vivid, including the women's facial features.
The scene is fresh, youthful and graceful, perfectly representative of Roman Art, and has of course a lot of femininity to it.
The very kind that influenced Europe until Art Nouveau!
On the left is an olive tree with a very ornate amphora to receive the olive oil.
The character on the left is holding a small tray and carrying an ewer on it, with oil taken from the amphora.
The central character is carrying a large basket full of fruit on her head.
She is handing a wreath of foliage, possibly olive twigs, to the last character on the right, who also holds a sacred palm.
Looking at the heights, features, hairdos, (and even breasts) of the 3 characters, it appears the scene may represent the 3 ages of woman:
adolescence (left) youth (center) old age (right). (old age was the equivalent of middle age today)
The plaque was probably inserted into a stand. Wood very likely, lost to History.
My guess is that the piece belonged to an aristocratic Gallo Roman lady, and was part of her cosmetics implements.
A very rare, but also particularly sophisticated artifact, which will not age, and should last for many more Centuries!
(You may also want to check out my fabulous series of 16th Century prints about the Ages of Woman Item ID: 3340pnt )
The best possible for its 1800 years or so. No particular damage. Bronze is healthy.
Will be shipped "Expedited" from Paris including online tracking, insurance and signature at delivery
* * * * * * * MORE ANTIQUE BRONZE ARTIFACTS IN MY ANTIQUE/Category* * * * * * * * *