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"Antique" Cameo with Portrait of the Roman Emperor Vespasian


Description Conservation Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description The Roman emperors were popular subjects for cameos (small relief carvings) in antiquity, and this cameo of Vespasian (AD 9-79) imitates that tradition. Cameos of the 16th and 17th centuries imitating Roman carving were often offered to collectors as Roman artifacts. Onyx was favored for cameos because its narrow veins of brown and white color can be carved to set off a white form against a brown background.
Conservation

The frame was polished and coated. The crack in the cameo was reinforced from the reverse for travel.

Date Description Narrative
1/15/2015TreatmentCleaned for loan
Exhibitions
  • World of Wonder. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1971-1972.
  • From Rubens to the Grand Tour. Academy Art Museum, Easton. 2015.
Provenance C.T. Hawkins [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Charles Newton-Robinson Sale, London, June 22, 1909, no. 114; Dikran Kelekian, Paris and New York [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1909, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters, 1909

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Creator
Period
1600-1650 (Baroque)
Medium
onyx, gilded copper alloy mount
(Precious Stones & Gems)
Accession Number
42.237
Measurements
H: 3 7/16 x W: 2 13/16 in. (8.8 x 7.1 cm)
Geographies
  • Italy (Place of Origin)

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