Georgian Omphale Intaglio Fob Seal
Quite imposing, this oversized late 18th century fob is a masterwork of a long forgotten artist. This superior quality carving of Queen Omphale depicts her in profile and classically portrayed in a fashion similar to that of Hercules who slew the Nemean monster and wore the skin of the Nemean lion on his head. In some Hellenic and Roman myths Omphale is reputed to be the lover of Hercules who was remanded by the gods to be her slave as his punishment for murder. Pure neoclassical in inspiration, we see these design influences pervade European art forms from about 1780 or 1790 through the early part of the 19th century. Working with fine tools, sections of the agate are slowly and meticulously removed from the surface to reveal this very finely rendered image which is then placed into this fob seal of solid 10k rose gold.
Measures 1-3/4 inches (4.3 cm) in height; the base is 1-1/4 inches (2.5 cm) in width by 1 inch (3.2 cm) in height. Condition: obviously used as a seal, there is medium wear to the top; a few small bends to the gold; overall use commensurate with time (220 or so years) and, it is in remarkable shape. The agate is in fine condition with minimal light surface wear. Dates to circa 1790 and is most likely English in origin. The scale of the fob is very large. Near museum quality carving and an exceptional find. This would make an exceptional ring and we are happy to undertake its transformation for you.