A Roman Skyphos & A Collection of Gem Stones to Lead Christies Antiquities & Ancient Jewelry Sale

Christies New York is delighted to offer two beautiful sales of Antiquities and Ancient Jewelry on December 6. Both will regale collectors and art lovers with an exceptional array of ancient art and jewelry, ranging from Egypt and the Near East to Greece and Rome. Antiquities features multiple highlights including a stunning Egyptian sandstone head of Pharaoh Ramesses II; an Anatolian marble idol dating back to the early 6th millennium, exquisitely modern and seductively tactile in its appearance; and a wonderfully refined Roman skyphos illustrating the ˜Sacrifice of Iphigeneia.” Ancient Jewelry, which never fails to subtly attract the discerning eye, counts among its highlight a Roman gold nicolo key ring; an extraordinary ensemble of gem stones from a Private European Collection collected in the 19th century and offered now in different lots; and a very proud and impressive necklace made of twenty-one amethyst ring stones.

Egyptian Highlights

An Egyptian monumental sandstone head of the Pharaoh Ramesses II, New Kingdom,
Dynasty XI, Reign of Ramesses II, 1290-1224 B.C This impressive portrait of
Pharaoh Ramesses II depicts the king wearing the Double Crown and a falsebeard
fastened with chin-straps. The eyes are deeply carved and angled
forward, which given the fact that this statue would have been towering high
above the viewer, meant that every observer would feel the penetrating gaze
of the pharaoh was directly aimed at him or her. Estimate: $400,000-600,000

An Egyptian bronze scepter finial, New Kingdom, Dynasty XIX, 1307-1196 B.C
Cast in the form of a jackal head, this little head simply demands attention.
The alert upright pointed ears, the eyes inlaid in obsidian and white stone,
the long neck arched at the poll and the interior hollow, this striking
bronze Scepter would have been used as attachment to a staff.

Estimate: $80,000-120,000
An Egyptian alabaster vase inscribed for Pepi I, Old Kingdom, Dynasty VI, Reign of
Pepi I, 2289-2255 B.C – This simple but elegant vase, shaped out of
alabaster, becomes all the more attractive because of its splendid
provenance. The base on which it rests provides an indisputable link to
the renowned collection of Lady Valerie Susie Meux, a well-known 19th
century collector whose collection was the topic of E.A.W. Budges Some
Account of the Collection of Egyptian Antiquities in the Possession of Lady Meux, of
Theobalds Park, Waltham Cross, in which the present vase is featured.

Estimate: $80,000-120,000

Near Eastern Art Highlights

An Anatolian marble idol, Neolithic Period, circa early 6th Millennium B.C
Staggeringly powerful, this superb figure features an impressive globular
body, and is a superb example reflecting the tradition of schematic
human idols. Everything about this statue is a magnificent ode, a
brilliant homage to fertility, nature, passion and life. Estimate: $300,000-
A Bactrian composite stone seated female figure, circa late 3rd Millennium B.C
This beautifully rendered seated female figure is nothing if not enigmatic.

The delicate oval face with a small mouth, slightly hooked nose and
incised eyes, catch the viewer unawares and then mesmerize. The
delicate depiction of her garments and hair only add to the intrigue and
sophistication that emanates from this Bactrian lady.

Estimate: $300,000-

Greek Highlights

An East Greek marble kouros, Archaic Period, circa 550-525 B.C
Sensual, tactile, almost overtly erotic, this sculptures detailed execution is
far superior to most of the standing draped figures known. The crinkly
vertical folds visible on the right breast and along the left side, and the
garment draped over the left shoulder and tightly wrapped around the body
accentuate this figures muscular body and pronounced buttocks in a
magnificent way. Even today, this teasingly covered but highly suggestive
body would make heads turn. Estimate: $300,000-500,000
Roman Highlights
A Roman silver skyphos, circa late 1st Century B.C, early 1st Century A.D
Depicting literary scenes inspired by the works of the great Greek
tragedians and possibly based on a now-lost wall-painting, this Roman
silver skyphos features the ‘Sacrifice of Iphigeneia.’ In a culture rich in
story telling, skyphoi were used during festivities and dinners and the
depicted legends served as an elegant stimulus to further conversation.
This silver skyphos exemplifies the best of Roman craftsmanship
without question. Estimate: $700,000-900,000

A Roman silver platter, circa mid 1st Century A.D – This shallow circular
plate, adorned with dolphins and swan-s heads, and featuring two
separately-made identical lobed crescentic handles, each cast with a
mask of Silenus provides another splendid example of Roman
craftsmanship and art. Estimate: $300,000-500,000

Ancient Jewelry Highlights

A late Roman gold and nicolo key-ring, circa late 3rd- early 4th Century A.D
A winged Victoria holding a palm branch and wreath forms the elegant
center piece of this exquisitely crafted key-ring. The ring is composed of
twelve panels with pierced-work decoration and includes an inscription
which most probably reveals – Homonoea, wife of P(ublius) Marcus
Dapienus, her husband.- Estimate: $15,000-20,000
A selection of Greek, Etruscan and Roman ring stones – This endlessly
beautiful group of gems features ring stones from a Private European
Collection, acquired in the late 19th-early 20th century. Dating from as
far back as the 5th century BC these delicate and pristine stones feature
intricate designs and display a refined attention to detail. Portraits of
princes and gods; laurels and butterflies; sphinxes and mythical beasts
adorn this exquisite selection of stones. Estimates: from $1,000 to
An Egyptian electrum stirrup ring, New Kingdom, Dynasty XVIII, 1550-1307
B.C – A plain hoop solid-cast ring, this striking Egyptian ring features a
flat oval bezel engraved with a standing figure of Bes. The god is facing
right, his head is turned back, and he is holding a tambourine. A cryptic
nfr sign below adds to the mystery. Estimate: $20,000-30,000
A necklace of twenty-one Roman amethyst ring stones, circa 1st Century B.C- 2nd
Century A.D- Featuring twenty-one uniquely engraved roman amethyst
ring stones, this necklace is modeled on an example crafted in
Nuremberg circa 1530. A unique and rare piece, it is a homage to
history, combining the allure of the ancient stones with the superb
elegance of a renaissance piece of jewelry. Estimate: $50,000-80,000

Auction: Antiquities December 6 at 10 a.m.
Ancient Jewelry December 6 at 2 p.m
Viewing: Christies Galleries at Rockefeller Center December 1 -“ 5

About Christies
Christies is the world’s leading art business with global auction sales in 2006 that totalled £2.51 billion /
$4.67 billion. Worldwide sales for the first half of 2007 totalled £1.63 billion / $3.25 billion, an increase of
32% by £ and 45% by $ from the same period last year and highest half year sales ever in art market history.
Christies is a name and place that speaks of extraordinary art, unparalleled service, and international glamour.
Founded in 1766 by James Christie, Christie’s conducted the greatest auctions of the 18th, 19th and 20th
centuries, and today remains a popular showcase for the unique and the beautiful. Christies offers over 600
sales annually in over 80 categories, including all areas of fine and decorative arts, jewellery, photographs,
collectibles, wine, and more. Prices range from $600 to over $80 million. Christies has 85 offices in 43
countries and 14 salerooms around the world including London, New York, Los Angeles, Paris, Geneva,
Milan, Amsterdam, Tel Aviv, Dubai and Hong Kong. Most recently, Christies has led the market with
expanded initiatives in emerging markets such as China, India and the United Arab Emirates, with successful
sales and exhibitions in Beijing, Dubai, Mumbai and Russia. Christie’s also offers its clients worldwide access
to its sales through Christie’s LIVE, its unique, real-time online bidding service.

*Estimates do not include buyer’s premium