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Early Victorian Demeter Cameo Ring


Early Victorian Demeter Cameo Ring



DATE: Victorian, c.1850

Demeter was the Greek goddess of agriculture, fertility, grain, and motherhood, here rendered in hardstone agate, white against a brown background. She was known to the Romans as Ceres, and, along with Liber and Libera, she made up the Aventine (or plebeian) Triad established c.493 BC within a sacred district on the Aventine Hill. The cult served as a focus of plebeian identity, in opposition to the patricians' Capitoline Triad of Jupiter, Minerva, and Juno. As well as being credited with giving the gift of agriculture to man, Ceres was a patron and protector of plebeian laws, rights, and Tribunes. It's thought that her Aventine Temple may have served as the plebeian law-court, as well as treasury and legal archive. Not only did Ceres introduce man to settlement and agriculture, through her laws she determined the course of settled, lawful and civilized life. Field boundaries and crops were sacred, and any adult who damaged or stole field-crops, or moved field boundaries would be hanged "for Ceres".

A 2nd Century AD inscription by a soldier in Britain suggests Ceres was by then part of a larger grouping of deities. She is "the bearer of ears of corn", the "Syrian Goddess", identical with the universal heavenly Mother, the Magna Mater. She is peace and virtue, and inventor of justice: she weighs "Life and Right" in her scale.

This signet ring dates from the early Victorian period, circa 1850, crafted in 18 karat gold.




Head: 1.8 x 1,5cm

Width of band: 2.3mm




Stamped 18ct


Very good, with fine antique patina. A couple of minor nicks to the edge of the stone


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