Origin of this pseudo-Roman cameo

by John
(Arizona, USA)

Front view

Front view

Front view
Oblique view showing damage at top of soldier's helmet
Lateral view showing layering of materials

Hi,


I've had an Art Deco man's ring setting in 10K gold for years that belonged to my grandfather. It was bought for him by my grandmother on their first wedding anniversary in 1942 and originally contained an onyx or hematite carved in intaglio with a Roman soldier's head in profile. The stone fell out within a year and he never had it repaired or wore it again.

Recently, I took it to a jeweler to have it repaired so I could wear it, as the setting itself is impressive. My plan was to have the jeweler just replace the missing stone with a piece of polished onyx, but he offered me instead a cameo that had come from another man's ring that was just about the perfect size. He said it was originally set in rose gold, the setting was to be melted down for the gold, and he saved the cameo. The cameo, pictured here, is so intriguing that I opted for it rather than plain onyx. It's definitely hand-carved, and the workmanship is very nice although not exceptionally fine.

The cameo shows two male figures in profile facing right, carved in the "capita jugata" style where the profiles overlap.  The top figure, in black, is what I think is supposed to be a Roman soldier, but the style of his dress looks to me more like what someone in, say, the Renaissance would have imagined a Roman soldier to look like. The white figure is indistinct other than it appears to be male rather than female. Both figures sit atop a third layer that is kind of translucent and pale orange in color, and in turn that all sits atop a rectangular piece of what I think is carnelian, which is what is actually set into the ring. It's unclear whether the top three layers are just stuck to the carnelian with adhesive, and thus were carved of a different material, or the carnelian is actually not, and this was all carved from one piece of agate or chalcedony.

One of the attached photos, taken through a loupe, shows the layers. Under the loupe, there appear to be striations in the white and orangeish layers that are more suggestive of stone to me than shell or similar material.

There is some damage to the top of the black figure's helmet, evident in the oblique view. The chip looks conchoidal to me, again suggestive of stone.

Any ideas at all on when and where this might have been made? I'm pretty sure it's neither ancient nor particularly modern (i.e., not 20th cen.) but could have come from any time in between. Thanks.

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Roman Soldier Cameo on Locket engraved 1880

by Cynthia Royer
(Harrisburg, PA)

Cameo 1

Cameo 1

Cameo 1
Cameo 2
Cameo 3

What can you tell me about the significance of this cameo locket? It is engraved from a husband to a wife 12/25/1880 on the back. The cameo is a Roman soldier. Why is the cameo black? Has it deteriorated in color or has it always been like that?

Also, do you think the locket is gold and what might something like this be worth? It opens and closes perfectly but the edges around the locket seem to be somewhat darkened.

Thanks so much! This is a piece from my grandmother's estate.

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Help with dark brown stone cameo ring with soldier on it.

by Erin
(Pa)


I have a brown stone cameo ring with some sort of soldier on it. The sides of the band have symbols. Would like to know history or orgin of it? Only know that it may be from the 1930's? Is it something that may be valuable? Help would be very much appreciated. Is a little dirty but detail of the soldier is excellent. Dont want to mess it up by cleaning it. Have more pictures if needed.

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Roman Soldier Cameo in Tiger's Eye

by Lisa
(Oregon)

I have a tiger's eye stone cameo ring that has a Roman soldier's profile carved into it. What is the meaning of the Roman soldier?

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Roman soldier cameo stone for Women?

I have inherited a black cameo stone with a tan Roman soldier cameo from a great aunt. I understand she found the stone and had the ring made. Can a woman wear a ring with a Roman soldier cameo head? Or, would that be considered for a male?

soldier head cameo ring

by Marie
(Michigan)

cameo of male, facing east, with a beard, wearing a helmet, with what reminds you of a horse's tail coming from the top of the helmet. The cameo is a chocolate color of brown and attached to an oval of dark, dark brown. The band is 3mm in width, with designs on the side. Any ideas?

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What type of soldier is he and why does he have a lion on his shoulder?

by Laura G
(Alpharetta, GA)

Full Image

Full Image

Full Image
Closeup of face
Closeup of lion
cameo back

I have a lovely cameo of a soldier and I'd like to know what type of soldier he is and what this cameo might be worth. I believe it's from the late 1800's or early 1900's and that it's made of shell with a gold plate setting, but I'm not sure of anything. He's left-facing with a heavy beard, a crested helmet and a uniform with a lion epaulet on his shoulder. Anything you can tell me about him would be appreciated!

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Gladiator Cameo

by Cristy H
(Chambersburg, PA)

Front

Front

Front
Side
Back
Front 2

I found this cameo at an antique flea market. I've never seen one like it so I bought it for $20. I'm use to seeing pretty women not gladiators and certainly not this color.

It has no identifying markers accept an area on the band that looks like someone had it sized at one time. It is in a silver setting--I think. I'm always skeptical if something is real or fake although you can see the etching marks (whatever you call them) where the artist carved the picture if you look closely enough.

I tried a magnet to see if it had any magnetic properties at all and it did not. I also tried a hot needle on the back to see if it was plastic and did not melt at all. I have no idea what the stone is. Depending on the light, it can look shiny, gray, black, sometimes a tinge of brown, and in some spots a dull deep black.

My questions are, what kind of stone is it, how old is it, is there any $ value to it other than what i paid for it? I love the history behind cameos and wondering who might have wore them at one time or another. Any info would be greatly appreciated!



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Roman Soldier Bust Facing Left Carved in a Tigers Eye

what is the meaning of a roman soldiers bust facing left carved into a tigers eye gemstone? Thank You!

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