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Engraved Gemstone with Capricorn

This gemstone was almost certainly inserted into a ring and used as a seal. The image carved into it refers to the celestial constellation Capricorn, which is also one of the four cardinal zodiac signs. The figure of Capricorn conventionally is depicted as a fish-tailed goat: in this example, the gem carver took great care to differentiate between the textures of hair and fish scales.

Roman
Engraved Gemstone with Capricorn
Imperial period, 1st century BC–2nd century AD
Carnelian
L. 5/8 in. (1.7 cm), W. 9/16 in. (1.5 cm)
Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art, Burton Y. Berry Collection, 66.36.18