Signet Ring thumbnail 1
Signet Ring thumbnail 2
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Jewellery, Rooms 91, The William and Judith Bollinger Gallery

Signet Ring

100-200 AD (made)
Artist/Maker
Place of origin

This is a well known type of ring of which many similar examples have been found. This particular ring is very fine.
The colourful and decorative bezel is engraved with an ant. Other similar rings bear a bee or a butterfly.
The ant is traditionally associated with the Roman goddess Ceres. She is a mother goddess of grain and fertility, and from her name derives the word 'cereals', her gift to humankind. This ring was probably inteded to bring prosperity to its wearer.


Object details
Categories
Object type
Materials and techniques
Gold set with an onyx intaglio
Brief description
Gold signet ring, the swelling hoop set with a raised onyx intaglio of an ant, the attribute of the goddess Ceres, Roman Empire, 100-200 AD
Physical description
Gold signet ring, the swelling hoop set with a raised sardonyx intaglio of an ant
Dimensions
  • Height: 3.2cm
  • Width: 3.3cm
  • Depth: 1.3cm
Style
Object history
ex Waterton Collection
Production
Roman
Subjects depicted
Summary
This is a well known type of ring of which many similar examples have been found. This particular ring is very fine.

The colourful and decorative bezel is engraved with an ant. Other similar rings bear a bee or a butterfly.

The ant is traditionally associated with the Roman goddess Ceres. She is a mother goddess of grain and fertility, and from her name derives the word 'cereals', her gift to humankind. This ring was probably inteded to bring prosperity to its wearer.
Collection
Accession number
487-1871

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Record createdMarch 20, 2006
Record URL
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