5th/4th century B.C.
Gold snake ring coiled into a spiral of three and half turns and engraved along a central rib to suggest scales
15-16 mm internal ring diameter; 8.5 g weight
Presented by Dr C.D.E. Fortnum in honour of Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee, 1897; ANFortnum.102
The snake, which sheds its skin, was considered a potent symbol of life and rebirth in the Graeco-Roman world. The length of the ring suggests that it may, in fact, have been worn in the hair.
Taylor & Scarisbrick, Finger Rings from Ancient Egypt to the present day, 1978, no. 79