Let’s Just Call Him Mercury!

(or Hermes.)


So I don’t think we should follow Crawford’s hesitation to identify the head on RRC 341/1.   He doesn’t hesitate to identify the youthful head with a winged diadem on a terminal bust as Mercury on RRC 418/2 and we also have a whole slew of 5th century style portrayals of Hermes on what are likely to be Roman Republican glass pastes, some even wearing wings (these are all in Berlin).




Oath Swearing on Glass Pastes


Working through Zwierlein-Diehl, Erika. 2007. Antike Gemmen und ihr Nachleben. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter & Co.

408 is one of two glass pastes in Berlin this motif.    Should have cited this publication in my Fides piece.  Ah well.

Notice that the creator of the glass paste did not use an impression and did not perfectly create negative of the scene which is so clearly modeled on the coinage.   He reverses the standing figures, but the kneeling figure will be rendered mirror image in any impression made by this glass paste.

Update 3/28/18:

Wow here plates are so much better that Fürtwangler.  Here’s his version (flipped to the same orientation):


and here’s the other one:


Clearly same general subject and composition model, but much less closely related to the coinage.