Malachite Bacchante
  • Material: Malachite, 18K gold tested .
  •  Size: just over 2 2/8" by just over 2"
  •  Date and Origin: Circa 1850/1860 Italy, frame  could be English.
  • Conditions: A tiniest chip at circa 8 o'clock, not noticeable by a naked eye, otherwise Mint.
More than Museum Quality and huge cameo depicting a Bacchante. They were followers of Bacchus the God of wine (Dionysus is the Greek name). Bunches of grapes and wine leaves in her hair.  Her head crowned with a wreath of fruiting vines, wearing a pelt and carrying a thyrsus.  This is a very unusual cameo, carved on malachite  that is a stone very hard to carve . These kind of cameos are very rare to find, especially finding a front face one. In so many years of cameo's collecting I have never found any examples.  Look how the carver used the stone to evidence the leaves, the pelt. I have never seen a Bacchante like this one.  You must look at the pelt she's wearing, you can see the perfect carving that gives you just the idea of a real pelt! Considering the hardness of the stone, the thing which makes the carving really extraordinary are the vines branches which ring her head, surely the fruit of a greatest master carver that with his painstaking work, his ability, his skill and his art was able to make in the hard stone a true embroidery with artistic results exceptionally real. This subject jumps out from the stone everything is so realistic, If to all of this we add the beauty of her face, her eyes' expression and her full and sensual mouth added to a spectacular gold , we can immediately understand that we are looking at an extraordinary masterpiece, a true work of art surely worthy to be displayed in a museum.  This is one of most beautiful Bacchante 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.