Ancient Roman "shell" Pendant Necklace, C.100-350 AD
Gilt bronze, just over 3/4” total height (0.83”). Deeply domed form, with median indent, fluted below. The back recessed. A form about which there is some uncertainty. Romans were very dependent on the sea and used sea motifs, real and mythical extensively in their art and decoration. Sea shell are depicted in mosaics and wall paintings. However, several variant sources describe these as worn specifically by prostitutes, with anatomical references. As prostitution was openly practiced, that may be the case. Professionally refurbished with the 24karat gold surface restored on gilt Sterling silver neck chain for contemporary wear. Jewelry gift boxed with certification of authenticity.