Ancient Roman intaglio ring in “modern” high carat gold setting. The banded agate intaglio is ca second century A.D. and depicts the legend of Romulus and Remus being suckled by the she wolf.
Romulus and Remus are the twin brothers and central characters of Rome’s foundation myth. Their mother is Rhea Silvia, daughter of Numitor, king of Alba Longa. Before their conception, Numitor’s brother Amulius seizes power, kills Numitor’s male heirs and forces Rhea Silvia to become a Vestal Virgin, sworn to chastity. Rhea Silvia conceives the twins by the god Mars, or by the demi-god Hercules. Once the twins are born, Amulius has them abandoned to die in the river Tiber. They are saved by a series of miraculous interventions: the river carries them to safety, a she-wolf (in Latin, lupa) finds and suckles them, and a woodpecker feeds them. A shepherd and his wife find them and foster them to manhood, as simple shepherds. The twins, still ignorant of their true origins, prove to be natural leaders. Each acquires many followers. When they discover the truth of their birth, they kill Amulius and restore Numitor to his throne. Rather than wait to inherit Alba Longa, they choose to found a new city.
Romulus wants to found the new city on the Palatine Hill; Remus prefers the Aventine Hill. They agree to determine the site through augury but when each claims the results in his own favor, they quarrel and Remus is killed. Romulus founds the new city, names it Rome, after himself, and creates its first legions and senate. The new city grows rapidly, swelled by landless refugees; as most of these are male, and unmarried, Romulus arranges the abduction of women from the neighboring Sabines. The ensuing war ends with the joining of Sabines and Romans as one Roman people. Thanks to divine favour and Romulus’ inspired leadership, Rome becomes a dominant force, but Romulus himself becomes increasingly autocratic, and disappears or dies in mysterious circumstances. In later forms of the myth, he ascends to heaven, and is identified with Quirinus, the divine personification of the Roman people.
Measurements of bezel :19 x 16 mm
Ring size : “R” = US 8+3/4