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Byzantine Gold, Enamel, and Precious Stones

As the most precious of metals, gold was prized for its radiant color. The luster of gold was augmented by the addition of jewels and semiprecious stones. Goldsmiths achieved similar effects by the use of filigree and cloisonné enamel, techniques by which they fused colored glass to gold grounds.

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Busts of Two Emperors

Roman
late 3rd-early 4th century
chalcedony on gold
BZ.1947.14

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