Jan 12, 2009
Jan 12, 2009

Mounted Rock Crystal

Mounted Rock Crystal


Gold, quartz, almandine

Overall: 10.2 x 1.9 x 1.6 cm (4 x 3/4 x 5/8 in.)

Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund 1953.640



When this object was acquired, it was thought to be a container for holy oil or another sacred relic or substance. However, closer examination revealed that the rock crystal prism at the object’s core is completely solid, leaving no room in which to insert such matter. The object’s original function thus remains unclear. It may have served as an amulet, a magical object meant to protect its owner from evil and mishaps.

See also
MED - Byzantine
Medieval Art
Type of artwork: 

Contact us

The information about this object, including provenance, may not be currently accurate. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email [email protected].

To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.

All images and data available through Open Access can be downloaded for free. For images not available through Open Access, a detail image, or any image with a color bar, request a digital file from Image Services.