Geometric and Early Archaic gems: first steps

Isolated finds of ivory and stone seals in Greece indicate an awareness of the craft before the 8th century BC, mainly inspired by eastern example, but without any distinct school or style emerging. The seals are essentially luxury items. Square stone seals used like stamps bear purely Geometric figures and are a wholly Greek phenomenon. Some are quite large, and most seems to be products of central Greece and the islands. These are made in the late 8th and early 7th centuries.

Seal image

White limestone stamp seal from Melos. Two men.

Oxford 1894.5A; Cat. I, no.1. 44mm. GGFR

2 Seal images

Black serpentine stamp seal, from Crete. A man; a bowma10 April, 2012ubject.

Paris, Cab. Med. M5837. 22mm. GGFR pl. 208.

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