Made from hammered sheet gold, this elegant decorative element from a diadem is of knot form, and features a central garnet set in gold as well as delicate braided borders, spirals, and granules along the ends.
This type of decorative device was thought to have the power to avert evil and cure wounds. The work’s style, craftsmanship, and decorative motifs suggest that it was made by a Greek goldsmith during the Hellenistic period. It seems to have been made on the northern fringes of the Greek world as the closest parallel to this piece is a gold wreath diadem from the tomb of a woman, possibly a wife of Phillip II of Macedon that was excavated in Vergina, Imathia, Central Macedonia, Greece.
Medium: Gold, garnet
Dimensions: Length: 2 3/8 inches (6.03 cm), Height: 1 5/8 inches (4.12 cm). Strung on a 20-inch braided 22K solid gold chain.
Condition: Intact and in excellent condition, suitable for wearing. High quality, fabulous example of Hellenistic workmanship.
Provenance: Private New England collection, acquired about 1985 from Nicholas Wright, London, from a collection assembled prior to 1980.