A Greek gold Leaf from an Olive Wreath, ca. 2nd century BCE
Object No: GJ2004
This delicate olive leaf was created by hammering a pure gold ingot to paper-thin thickness, then cut to form and accentuated with repoussé contour lines along the three lobes. It originally formed part of a solid gold victory wreath.
For related examples see: Rudolph, W. A Golden Legacy: Ancient Jewelry from the Collection of Burton Y. Berry, Indiana University Art Museum, (1995)pg. 158-9, fig. 33.B.
Background: Gold wreaths were made imitating their natural counterparts in various forms, including oak, olive, ivy, vine, laurel, and myrtle. Most of these trees or plants have associations with various deities. Mythology says, for example, olive wreaths were made from the sacred olive tree that grew from where Athena struck her spear on the ground at the Acropolis.
Because of their fragility, gold wreaths were probably not meant to be worn very often, only during special functions such as banquets, as victors' prizes in war or athletic competitions, or on religious or civic occasions, but they are also frequently recovered from burials. In a funerary setting, the gold wreath symbolized immortality and designated an individual who had led a distinguished life. For the ancient Greeks, the olive tree was a symbol of peace, wisdom, and triumph.
Condition: Small tear and apex to one lobe missing, otherwise intact and in very good condition overall.
Dimensions: Length: 1 3/4 inches (4.5 cm)
Provenance: Paul Ilton private collection, acquired prior to 1958 and then by descent.
Sands of Time provides a lifetime, unconditional guarantee of authenticity and provenance. Every artifact purchased from us is accompanied by a Certificate of Authenticity, stating culture, provenance and age. Furthermore, we conduct due diligence to ensure the item, to the best of our knowledge, has not been illegally obtained from an excavation, architectural monument, public institution or private property. Wherever possible, reference is made to existing collections or publications.
Sands of Time Antiquities are proud to uphold the following Code of Conduct:
- We undertake to make, to the best of our ability, all purchases in good faith.
- We undertake not to purchase or sell objects until we have established, to the best of our ability, that such objects were not stolen from excavations, architectural monuments, public institutions or private property.
- We will not dismember and sell separately parts of one complete object.
- We undertake to the best of ability to keep objects together that were originally meant to be kept together.
- As appropriate we will keep photographic records of objects prior to repair and restoration, to be honest and open by describing in writing the amount of repair and restoration undertaken to a prospective purchaser.
- To the best of our ability, we guarantee authenticity and provenance of all objects offered for sale.
- Deposit: A deposit of 15% of the total price is required upon purchase.
- Checkout: Order through our website and select the "layaway" option at checkout.
- Flexibility: You are not restricted to a set monthly payment; pay what you wish when you wish, however your balance must be paid within six months of the order date or you risk forfeiture.
- Title: Property title remains with Sands of Time Antiquities, Inc. until payment is made in full.
- Shipment: Once payment is complete, we will ship your order by the next business day.
Should you cancel your layaway purchase, a 15% restocking-fee will apply. If you exchange or trade-up the objet purchased while it is on layaway, the restocking fee for the original purchase will not apply. If you would like to take advantage of our layaway system or would like to discuss an alternative option that better suits your budget, please contact us via e-mail or call 1-202-342-0518.