« PreviousContinue »
backed with foil, and it is remarkable that the reflectors are convex, so that the image must have been distorted. A similar surface is attempted on the square sheet of metal, which is glazed with a vitreous enamel (No. 292).
The more usual metal mirrors have two principal forms: a circular reflector, mounted on a handle like the modern hand-glass, which is represented by specimens from Naukratis (No. 293), and a similar disc enclosed in a folding box (No. 294). Both these varieties were often decorated with engraving (fig. 134), and the handles were sometimes modelled as statuettes. In the Bronze Room there are large collections of all types. A small pocketmirror in this Case has on one side of the bronze box a head of Nero, and on the other the god Dionysos standing by a vine (No. 295). The disc is silver-plated, like most of these examples. Two similar boxes have been turned out of large brass coins of Nero (No. 296). A fragment of a silvered mirror from Amathus in Cyprus has a palm-tree engraved on its face (No. 297). Though the design indicates that this side is the front, yet the reflector was the convex back, and thus, in a spirit quite foreign to Greek art, the
purpose of the thing was subordinated to its decoration.
Other relics of the dressing-table are the toilet-boxes and scentbottles. There is a Greek toilet-box from Naukratis, still coloured by the rouge which it contained (No. 298); and another has a carved wooden lid in the shape of a woman's head of great beauty (No. 299). A leaden box was found in a Greek tomb at Halikarnassos (No. 300), and others of bronze and ivory date from the Roman period. Most of the wooden boxes are carved in fantastic or frivolous shapes: a swimming duck, a crouching boar, and a shoe (Nos. 301, 302, 303). These are divided into compartments for the various powders, and some blocks of paint are still preserved. For liquid ointments there are an alabaster box (No. 304) and two bottles of the same material, and remains of a leather bottle with its cork (No. 305). An Etruscan bronze cista, which stands on three human feet, contains a set of movable tubes, each for a different unguent (No. 306). The lid of this receptacle was crowned by the small bronze statuette which stands beside it. Besides cosmetics for the complexion, the toilet-boxes may have held tooth-powders, for which there are many receipts in the works of ancient writers on medicine.
Jewellery.--Among the jewellery for personal adornment there are pins for hair and clothes, finger-rings and earrings, bracelets and necklaces. Although the use of these is of great antiquity,
most of the types are still reproduced in modern work, and the objects explain themselves.
The rings are generally set with an engraved gem or bezel ; some have revolving scarabs which are pierced through the middle (No. 307), another has a gold intaglio portrait of the Empress Faustina (No. 308), while an enormous bronze ring has the design cut in the bezel itself, a double head of Hermes and a Seilenos (No. 309). These examples are in bronze and of poor workmanship, but they serve to illustrate the general style of ancient rings. A great number in gold and silver, with the rest of the antique jewellery, are exhibited in the Gold Ornament and Gem Room, where the subject can be more adequately studied. The intaglio designs were for use in sealing, which was more commonly practised by the ancients than it is now. Others have a purely decorative purpose, and were worn in profusion. The bronze hand (No. 310) has rings on the upper joints of the fingers, in accordance with common fashion of the Roman Imperial period. The Greeks of an early period did not usually wear ornamental rings, although signets were in constant use, and it was not until the fourth century B.C.
Fig. 130. — GREEK BRONZE EAR
RINGS OF EARLY DATE, FROM that rings were worn for display.
EPHESUS (Nos. 311-12). 3:4. In Rome there were restrictions on the use of the gold ring, but these were lessened as time went on, until in the late Empire they practically disappeared. trothal rings were customary among the Romans, but in Greece there is no record of their use. A gold betrothal ring is shown in Case 95 (No. 48).
The bronze earrings are from the site of the temple of Artemis at Ephesus, and are earlier than the sixth century B.C. (fig. 130). Two types are represented; the swelling hoop of wire, which hung like a liquid drop (No. 311), and the heavy coil, which was suspended from a ring (No. 312). Both are primitive, but the shapes occur in Greek and Roman jewellery of all periods, with more elaborate decoration.
A favourite form of bracelet was modelled in imitation of a snake coiled round the arm (No. 313).
The same design appears also in a finger-ring (No. 314). Other bracelets end in heads of
animals : a heavy silver piece from Kameiros has lions' heads (No. 315), and rams and goats are often represented. Snake-coils of large size were worn on the legs; a terracotta torso from Ephesus has this ornament on its thigh, and a chain of beads is hung round the shoulders and crossed between the breasts (No. 316). Such chains were frequently worn in the fourth century B.C. and later.
The necklaces here exhibited consist of beads of painted terracotta and glass. Those of more precious materials are in the Gold
Ornament Room. The glass pendants (No. 317) have belonged to necklaces, and the large crescents of gilt bronze were similarly suspended. Links and studs of Roman times (No. 318) bear a striking resemblance to the modern articles, as does a coiled hook-and-eye which dates actually from the Primitive Italian period (No. 319). A peculiar fastening is seen in the double hooks which probably served to loop together the two sides of a shawl or cloak (No. 320). They are probably of Roman date, and come in some instances from the province of Gaul.
Some of the pins may have been used equally well to fasten
the clothing or to adorn the hair; but others were evidently designed to serve only one of these purposes. Those in carved ivory are plainly hair-pins (No. 321; fig. 131). The roughlyworked busts of Roman ladies of the Empire indicate the period to which the series belongs. The little statuette is intended to represent Aphrodite wringing the water out of her hair, after rising from the sea. A fine gold pin similarly modelled is exhibited in the Gold Ornament Room (Case H). The ivory hand, which holds a cone and is encircled by a serpent, has some magical significance, like the bronze votive hands in Case 105 (p. 47).
The metal pins are less elaborate. The simplest shape was straight and headless, a direct copy of the natural thorn which first suggested the idea. A very primitive head is seen on the small bronze pin which is bent round at the top (No. 322; fig. 132a). It was found in the island of Kalymnos, and belongs to the preMycenaean age, in the second millennium before Christ. A silver pin is similarly bent, but as it has a head as well, is not so early (No. 323; fig. b). Another prehistoric type is represented by several bronze pins which were excavated from tombs of the late Mycenaean age at Enkomi in Cyprus (No. 324; fig. c). These are pierced with eyes in which chains were fastened to secure the pins to the dress or to each other. Three pins crowned
FIG. 133.-A WOMAN by large ivory knobs come from the same
THE DORIAN site and belong to the same period (No. 325;
Chiton, SHOWING fig. d). The bronze pin with a head made of
SHOULDER. several discs is Greek of the sixth century B.C., as it appears in the paintings of the François Vase at Florence, which is an Attic work of that date (No. 326; figs. 132c, 133). In other figures on the vase the chain which joined the pins is represented. Some pins from the temple of Artemis at Ephesus are of this pattern, and others are in the shape of fruits and flowers. Another classical type is the silver pin with a moulded head (No. 327; fig. 132/). Others of less remarkable designs were not peculiar to any period. Of the extremely long pins at the top of this case, one probably represents the acus discriminalis which was used to part and curl the locks of hair (No. 328). It is frequently shown in toilet-scenes on Italian
vases and mirrors. Fig. 134 is from an Etruscan mirror in the Bronze Room.
Fibulae.- Although the straight pin was used for fastening the dress, brooches or safety-pins were most commonly worn. This method of fastening was of early origin, and its use can be traced in all parts of Europe. One type was like the modern brooch with a flat decorative plate ; but it was less frequent than the safety-pin, which was made of one length of wire. This pin, the
fibula, experienced in the first centuries of its existence and in the hands of different peoples so many variations and developments of form, that these can be classified in distinct types, and their presence in tombs and other deposits affords valuable evidence of the date and origin of the objects with which they occur.
The simplest form of fibula is represented here by examples excavated at Enkomi in Cyprus, which belong to the end of the Bronze Age, before 1000 B.c. (No. 329; fig. 135). Greek safetypins of the succeeding period, which is known from the character