Did you know that there was no goddess of music?

Ancient Greek and Roman mythology appears to give us only a muse for music and her name was Euterpe, one of 7 sisters who were proclaimed to inspire.  While describing the newest consignment of Carnelian shell cameos my research pulled up that the enticing figure in this 4 cm oval shaped pendant framed in 18K gold could only be a muse, since the only deity of music was Apollo – a man ! THE MOUSAI (Muses) were the goddesses of music, song and dance, and the source of inspiration to poets.  Pierino Neri, the artist who carved this particular cameo, choose to use the contours of the shell and hand carve a lyre by her side instead of the more commonly found double flute.

Cameo Pendant with Euterpe

The Bull mouth or Red Helmet sea shell, also known as the carnelian shell, were discovered to have layers of strongly contrasting colors and the shells were large enough to be perfect for carving cameos making them ideal for carving into cameos. The vivid colors and contours of the shell become are both the objective and the challenge that each artist is confronted with as they decide what image and how to portray it.

Cameo Pendant of the Muse Euterpe with a lyre

Our Eutrepe has fine details in her hair, the laurel wreath encircling her head and the folds of the gown.  It is quite impressive how the artists creates an entire story of time, beauty and depth while portraying only one element.


About Pierotucci

Since 1972 Pierotucci has been designing and producing classic Italian Leather goods for men & women, including leather bags, leather handbags and purses, leather jackets and leather accessories such as wallets, gloves, belts and much more.
This entry was posted in Italian Shell cameo art and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s