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Edwardian Diamond Ouroboros Ring


Edwardian Diamond Ouroboros Ring



DATE: Edwardian, c.1910

Particularly weird antique ouroboros ring, what would usually be a serpent or dragon's head has something of a sheepy look. An ouro-baa-ros? The body features engrave cross-hatched scale detailing, with garnet eyes and a transitional cut diamond "brain". 

The Ouroboros, or "tail devourer", is a potent symbol found in many cultures going back as far as history records. It represents introspection, rebirth, and the cyclical nature of things, the oldest known example appeared on a golden shrine found in the tomb of Tutankhamen (13th century BC); it first entered the western tradition through the Papyri Graecae Magicae (Greek Magical Papyri) sometime between 100BC and 400AD. The Egyptians understood time not in the current linear fashion, but as a series of repeating loops or cycles, constantly evolving, and likely inspired by the flooding of the Nile. It has significance to the Gnostics, where opposing ends of the snake were interpreted as the earthly and divine in man, existing in union despite appearing to be irreconcilable. Also found in Hindu, Norse, Roman, Mesoamerican cultures, as well as having had a resurgence among Renaissance alchemists who's ultimate goal of immortality meant breaking the never-ending cycle of the Ouroboros, Once and for all.

A more modern reference is Kekelué's dream, the German organic chemist's eureka moment when he figured out the molecular structure of benzene: 

"I was sitting, writing at my text-book; but the work did not progress; my thoughts were elsewhere. I turned my chair to the fire and dozed. Again the atoms were gamboling before my eyes. This time the smaller groups kept modestly in the background. My mental eye, rendered more acute by the repeated visions of the kind, could now distinguish larger structures of manifold conformation: long rows, sometimes more closely fitted together; all twining and twisting in snake-like motion. But look! What was that? One of the snakes had seized hold of its own tail, and the form whirled mockingly before my eyes. As if by a flash of lightning I awoke; and this time also I spent the rest of the night in working out the consequences of the hypothesis."


Transitional cut diamond - 0.12ct (approx.)



Width at head: 5.4mm

Width of band: 3.2mm




No marks present, tests as 9k gold


Very good, some light wear commensurate with age including to the cross-hatching at the back of the band. This piece can be sized, but there may be some disruption to the pattern. Get in touch to discuss

Edwardian Diamond Ouroboros Ring Edwardian Diamond Ouroboros Ring Edwardian Diamond Ouroboros Ring Edwardian Diamond Ouroboros Ring