This image is available for download, without charge, under the Getty's Open Content Program.
Open Content images tend to be large in file-size. To avoid potential data charges from your carrier, we recommend making sure your device is connected to a Wi-Fi network before downloading.
Currently on view at: Getty Villa, Gallery 216, Roman Treasury
Cameo with Four Theater Masks set into a Mount
gem 1st century; mount mid-19th century or later
Gem: sardonyx; mount: gold
2.9 cm (1 1/8 in.)
Carved on this cameo are two pairs of theatrical masks separated by a Greek inscription that reads: "Euripides," the name of the Athenian playwright. One pair of masks depicts the faces of two
Dramatic performances in ancient Greece and Rome divide into two basic categories: tragedy and comedy, plus the slapstick satyr-play. The satyr masks on this gem are
The gold mount with a chain into which this cameo is set is modern.
Bram Hertz, German, died 1865 (London, England), sold to Joseph Mayer.
1857 - 1859
Joseph Mayer, British, 1803 - 1886 [sold, The Celebrated and Well-known Collection....formed by B. Hertz, Sotheby's, London, February 7, 1859, lot 1378.]
Constantine Alexander Ionides, Greek, 1833 - 1900 (London, England), [collection number 132] by inheritance to his son, Alexander Constantine Ionides, 1900.
1900 - 1931
Alexander Constantine Ionides, Greek, 1862 - 1931 (London, England), by inheritance to his heirs, 1931.
Heirs of Alexander Constantine Ionides, Greek, 1862 - 1931
Lady Adam Gordon , great grand-daughter of Alexander Constantine Ionides (London, England)
Mrs. Diana Scarisbrick, born 1928, sold through Oliver Forge (London, England) to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 2001.
Rome on the Grand Tour (January 8 to August 11, 2002)
- The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), January 8 to August 11, 2002
Koner, W., et al. Catalogue of the Collection of Assyrian, Babylonian, Egyptian, Greek, Etruscan, Roman, Indian, Peruvian and Mexican Antiquities formed by B. Hertz. London: 1851, p. 81.
Sotheby's, London. Sale cat., Catalogue of the Celebrated and Well-known Collection of...Antiquities formed by B. Hertz. February 7, 1859, pp. xx and 99, lot 1378.
Furtwaengler, Adolf. Die antiken Gemmen: Gesichte der Steinschneidekunst in Klassischen. Leipzig: Geisecke & Devrient, 1900, vol. 1, pl. 50.54; vol. 2, p. 246, no. 54.
Boardman, John. Engraved Gems. The Ionides Collection (London: 1968), pp. 42, 101-2, no. 71, ill.
Boulter, Cedric G. "Reviewed Work: Engraved Gems: The Ionides Collection by John Boardman." The Classical Journal 64, no. 6 (1969), p. 283.
Kornbluth, Genevra Alisoun. Engraved Gems of the Carolingian Empire. (University Park, Pa.: Penn State University Press, 1995), p. 83.
Boardman, John. The Marlborough Gems (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009), p. 138.