Gold Necklace with Amethysts, Glass, and Gold Beads
Gold, amethyst, (colored glass or rock crystal and emerald) beads
Overall: 17 9/16 x 9/16 x 1/4 in. (44.6 x 1.4 x 0.6 cm)
Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 301
Using gold wires, Byzantine goldsmiths worked the delicate filigree clasp on each of these necklaces. The Greeks wore amethyst, a violet colored quartz found in jewelry across the ancient world, as an amulet to protect against the effects of wine and poison and to keep them from harm in battle.
J. Pierpont Morgan, London and New York (until 1917)
Rorimer, James J., and William Holmes Forsyth. "The Medieval Galleries." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 12, no. 6 (February 1954). p. 126.