A fine greek banded agate scaraboid seal intaglio. Lion.
5th century B.C.
17 x 25 x 13 mm
The scene depicts a lion facing right with a branch (?) in his mouth. The animal is characterized by realistic anatomic details; the body musculature and the coasts with rendering volumes. The crest and tail hair are depicting by thin engraved lines meanwhile the eyes, the articulations and the terminals of the feet by globular elements. Groundline. Scaraboid shape and pierced lengthwise. This large stone is masterfully engraved with refined details and artisitc sense of composition. The style of this engraving is referable to classical Greek production, probably identifiable in that transition phase between the archaic and early classical age. Some of these stylistic and executive details are also in the Graeco-Persian production, with numerous stylistic similarities both in the iconography and in the engraving technique. Beautiful colors and fine variety of banded agate. Sligth wear marks. Very rare.
Parallels: J. Boardman, Greek Gems and Finger Rings, p. 185 n. 388 ss.; p. 290 n. 520, p. 292 n. 575; p. 352 n. 866 (greco-persian, "Court Style"). J. Boardman, Archaic Greek Gems, plate XXXI. G.M.A. Richter, Catalogue of engraved gems, The Metropolitan Museum, New York, p. 15 n. 55, n. 101.
UK private collection, London.