Gemstone depicting Minerva

Contributed by The Hunterian

Gemstone depicting Minerva

This object from the collection of the Hunterian Museum was chosen, and written about, by Nicola McConnell, postgraduate student, Department of Classics, University of Glasgow.

This small gemstone was discovered at a Roman fort in Scotland and depicts the goddess Minerva, the Roman goddess usually associated with wisdom. Minerva, like Athena, the Greek equivalent goddess, is often also associated with warfare and martial matters and the depiction on this gemstone clearly shows her clad in a helmet and wielding a shield and spear.

I chose this object due to the level of intricate detail that is found on such a small object. It would surely have taken a high degree of skill and investment of time and patience to both shape the stone and engrave the figure. An object such as this could be easily overlooked in a museum due to its small size, yet it is extremely beautiful and displays excellent craftsmanship.

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About this object

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Bearsden Roman fort


2nd century AD


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