- Material: Sardonyx Shell, 18K yellow and white gold tested, approx. 0.35 cts of diamonds in old brilliant cut.
- Size: just over 2 1/8" by 1 7/8"
- Date and Origin: Circa 1850/1860 Italy, frame could be English.
- Conditions: A couple of very very slight hairlines by origin, two tiniest chips under his helmet, both lines and chips are not visible by a naked mentioned for accuracy, otherwise mint.
More than Museum Quality cameo depicting Ajax, the Greek Hero of the Trojan war. This a more than rare cameo as front face cameos are to find and especially one like this that is simply incredible. Look how the carver used the shell to evidence his face, his helmet and his neck This subject really jumps out from the shell, this cameo seems just like a sculpture. This is one of most beautiful Ajax I have ever seen, the pictures speak by themselves. The frame is spectacular too, so elaborate and wonderful. This is another masterly carved cameo. A very desirable collectors piece, rare and museum quality cameo.
A bit of History:
Ajax was a mythological Greek hero, the son of Telamon and Periboea and king of Salamis. He is one of the main heroes in Homer's Iliad
and in the Epic Cycle, a series of epic poems about the Trojan War. To distinguish him from Ajax, son of Oileus, he is called "Greater Ajax," or "Ajax the Great" or "Telamonian Ajax," In Homer's Iliad he is described as of great stature , the tallest and strongest of all the Achaeans, second only to his cousin Achilles in skill-at-arms. He was trained by the centaur Chiron (who had also trained his father, Telamon, and Achilles' father Peleus), at the same time as Achilles. Aside from Achilles, Ajax is the most valuable warrior in Agamemnon's army. He commands his army wielding a great hammer and a huge shield made of seven ox-hides with a layer of bronze. He is not wounded in any of the battles described in the Iliad
. You can see the centaur Chiron carved on his helmet too. This cameo is after a marble bust of Ajax, in Rome. The frame is simple but elegant, 15 kt gold. A very desirable cameo for any collector.