Posted 3 years ago
This lovely hardstone (agate) bacchante/maenad, wreathed in grapevine is signed 'Francescangeli'. The Internet shows me gorgeous micromosaics by Agostino Francescangeli, and his shop, where he sold micromosaics & other objects 'di belle arti', is listed in guidebooks for Rome in the 1830s - 40s as being at Via del Babuino, #118. It seems likely to me that the cameo artist is a lapidary relative, but have not been able to find any other info, so hoping the massive CW collective brain knows more.
While I am reading the number as 1822 & seeing it as the year, it is also possible I am misreading the third digit & that the number, along with the 'CD' & mystery mark below that (V? Lambda?), are inventory notations placed there by a dealer. Any insight/speculation welcome.
This is a good sized piece, a bit more than 4cm in height & approx. 3 cm wide, quite hefty in the hand. The stone has been treated so that the rim & back are black, framing the otherwise brown & white cameo. The back surface is slightly convex rather than perfectly flat. There are none of the scratches or chips one would expect if the piece had ever been set, then later removed.