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Anonymous (eleventh century, first half)

 
 

Obverse

St Basil, blessing with his right hand and holding a gospel book with his left. Inscription in two columns: ||Σ|ΙΛ|ΙΟ|Σ : ὁ ἅ(γιος) Βασίλιος. Border of dots.

Reverse

St Kosmas at the left, holding a small cross in his right hand and a medical instrument in his left, and St Damian at the right, holding an uncertain object in his right hand and a small cross in his left. Inscription above their heads: , : ὁ ἅ(γιος) Κο(σ)[μ](ᾶς) : ὁ ἅ(γιος) Δ(α)μ(ιανὸς). No inscription preserved at left. Inscription in column center: Ο|A|. : Inscription at right: : Both are integrated into the rendering of the saint's name.

Obverse

St Basil, blessing with his right hand and holding a gospel book with his left. Inscription in two columns: ||Σ|ΙΛ|ΙΟ|Σ : ὁ ἅ(γιος) Βασίλιος. Border of dots.

Reverse

St Kosmas at the left, holding a small cross in his right hand and a medical instrument in his left, and St Damian at the right, holding an uncertain object in his right hand and a small cross in his left. Inscription above their heads: , : ὁ ἅ(γιος) Κο(σ)[μ](ᾶς) : ὁ ἅ(γιος) Δ(α)μ(ιανὸς). No inscription preserved at left. Inscription in column center: Ο|A|. : Inscription at right: : Both are integrated into the rendering of the saint's name.

Accession number BZS.1951.31.5.3549
Diameter 27.0 mm; field: 17.0 mm
Previous Editions

DO Seals 7, 5.13. 

Credit Line Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Bequest of Thomas Whittemore.

Commentary

Parallel Seal: Istanbul, no. 10.49 and Metcalf, Cyprus, no. 584.

The editors of the Istanbul catalogue cite two other specimens as parallels in the Hermitage collection (M-4273 and M-4339), edited by Šandrovskaja, “Anargirov,” 69-78, pl. 1, no. 6 and pl. 2, no. 8. However, the two Hermitage seals clearly display Saint Panteleimon and not Saint Basil as the figure opposite Saints Kosmas and Damian, so they are not parallel examples of the Istanbul or Dumbarton Oaks pieces.