The J. Paul Getty Museum

Engraved Gem with a Scorpion and a Magical Inscription

Object Details

Title:

Engraved Gem with a Scorpion and a Magical Inscription

Artist/Maker:

Unknown

Culture:

Roman

Date:

A.D. 100–250

Medium:

Yellow jasper

Object Number:

85.AN.370.32

Dimensions:

1.5 × 1.1 × 0.3 cm (5/8 × 7/16 × 1/8 in.)

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Object Description

Ovoid gem with beveled edge. On one face, a scorpion (eight legs, two pincers) seen from above. On the other, magical inscription in three lines: ωιθθμ/εν χινιαμ/βων, a variant of ωρθμενχινιαμβων, a magical phrase often associated with scorpions on amuletic gems.

Provenance
Provenance
by 1984 - 1985

Damon Mezzacappa (New York, New York) and Jonathan H. Kagan (New York, New York), sold to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1985.

Bibliography
Bibliography

"Acquisitions/1985." The J. Paul Getty Museum Journal 14 (1986), p. 198, no. 78.

Michel, Simone. Die Magischen Gemmen. Zu Bildern und Zauberformeln auf geschnittenen Steinen der Antike und Neuzeit. (Berlin: Akademie Verlag, 2004), p. 332, 51.1.a, pl. 66, 1, pl. IV, 3.