Ca. AD 200-300
A beautiful Roman gold finger ring with an intaglio depicting a horse and rider. The band is characterised by a round hoop that is slightly rounded on the outside and flat on the inside. The shoulders of the ring expand to support the bezel, which is set with a convex, octagonal-shaped intaglio. The intaglio has been expertly engraved with a depiction of a left-facing horse and its rider sitting atop. The horse is rendered with incredible detail, capturing the animal's muscular build and graceful movement. The rider sits atop the horse with a commanding posture.
This choice of subject reflects the importance of equestrian culture in the Roman world, where horsemanship was a symbol of status and military prowess. It is a classic example of Roman Imperial gold jewellery, which was made in large quantities in a style heavily influenced by Etruscan and Late Hellenistic artistic traditions following the relaxation of preexisting sumptuary laws.
Provenance: From a private London collection; acquired on the British art market, 1990s.
ROMAN GOLD RING WITH HORSE RIDER INTAGLIO
D: 16.71mm / US: 6 1/4 / UK: M 1/2 ; 6.53g