A Roman Bone Pyxies
Bone pyxies could be jewelry boxes, cosmetics holders, or just a vessel for trinkets in ancient Rome. Many were adorned with small yet personal scenes such as the one seen here of a woman holding a child. The intimate figures on this pyxis shows how these objects were closely associated with the private family life of a wife or a sister. The foreground’s thick horizontal table binds these figures even closer, while the background shows slight details that further enhance this small yet affecting carving.
The stark lines and the artist’s use of depth convey a realistic and affecting image that lends this unassuming object a special, almost secret, purpose. What jewels were held within? Whose fingers dipped into this pyxis to apply its alluring cosmetics? This object has been professionally restored and is in good condition