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Treasures of the Ferrell Collection

Treasures of the Ferrell Collection

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James Ferrell has collected Greek and Roman antiquities for many years to satisfy his life-long interest in ancient history. His collection is particularly important for its focus on jewelry, engraved gems and cameos, imperial medallions, and silver plate dating from the end of the Roman Empire and the early Byzantine period (3rd-7th centuries AD). It was at this time that the Roman Empire was gradually overrun by barbarian invaders and shifted its capital eastward, to the newly founded city of Constantinople. This volume publishes over 200 works of art belonging to Ferrell. Much of the material derives from imperial workshops and served as official gifts. The catalogue opens with a small selection of Hellenistic jewelry, including a group composed of a necklace, earrings, and rings most liekly of Ptolemaic origin. The second chapter is composed primarily of late Roman jewelry, gems and cameos, and other objects in precious metal, including necklaces, bracelets, rings, fibulae, and belts, most of which date between the third and fifth centuries AD. The third and fourth chapters are devoted to the jewelry and other objects of the sort found in Gothic tombs of the fifth and sixth centuries AD. Chapter Five presents an outstanding selection of Byzantine jewelry of the sixth and seventh century, including pendants, crosses, bracelets, earrings, and rings, many set with precious gems and pearls. The final chapter is devoted to Byzantine ecclesiastical silver of the sixth century AD. This publication will be of considerable interest to a variety of scholars, museums, and collectors. Historians of late antiquity will find many objects with important imperial associations. The rich selection of Byzantine jewelry and silver, including many pieces decorated with unusual iconography, will be of importance to Byzantinists. The Gothic objects include many pieces of particularly high quality. Jewelry historians and collectors will be delighted with the superb color photography.