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    Romano-Kushan Rarity

    NW India. Gold Medallion Pendant. Gold medallion. 39mm diameter; loop height 9mm, 7.62g (12h), c. late 4th century AD. Repoussé central design, set within a wide frame with two rope borders, and an exterior beaded border. The suspension loop is polygonal in shape. The central image is a female bust right, wearing a large hoop earring and necklace, and holding a lotus flower. It may represent the goddess Sri, consort of Vishnu. See Joe Cribb, in The Crossroads of Asia, eds. E. Errington and Joe Cribb, 1992, p. 146, no. 146, for the discussion of the British Museum and Hiriyama medallions, with earlier bibliography. Extremely unusual quasi-numismatic item, that could easily fit into either a jewelry collection or a coin collection, since the devices on these pendants are usually based on coin types. EF.

    This piece is related to two other gold medallion pendants with similar frames and suspension loops, one in the British Museum and one in the Hiriyama collection, Japan. The central part of the British Museum piece is a struck gold disk with the bust of Roman emperor, based on coins of Constantine the Great or his sons; the reverse, showing the Kushan goddess Ardochsho, could have been copied from a coin of Kanishka I. The frame was made separately and soldered to the central disk. The Hiriyama piece employs an imitation of a late Kushan coin in the name of king Shaka. The similar frame and suspension loop suggest the same workshop for all three jewellery pieces, two copying available exotic coins, and the present piece with a local image.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2011
    14th Thursday
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