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Rock crystal Statuette of a Lion

Date:
3rd–4th century
Culture:
Roman or Byzantine
Medium:
Rock crystal
Dimensions:
Overall: 1 1/2 x 2 1/8 x 1 in. (3.8 x 5.4 x 2.5 cm)
Classification:
Lapidary Work-Crystal
Credit Line:
Bequest of Ada Small Moore, 1955
Accession Number:
55.135.6
  • Description

    A groove on the bottom suggests that this tiny lion was formerly mounted onto another object, possibly a scepter.

    Five rock crystal works found in a cistern in Carthage (now in Tunisia, North Africa) demonstrate the quality of the arts of that great city as the Roman world became Byzantine. The Roman naturalist Pliny, describing its beauty, believed crystal to come from snow. It was thought to protect against kidney ailments and other diseases.

  • Provenance

    Mrs. William H. Moore, Potomac (until 1955)

  • See also
    What
    Where
    When
    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History
468469

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