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The handmade gold setting is made of 12 karat rose gold with bold shoulders and a 5 mm wide band at the smallest area. The ring is set with a hand carved cameo which is inset to protect the carving. The carving is “Mars” on the rings face.
In ancient Roman religion and myth, Mars (Latin: Mārs, Martis) was the god of war and also an agricultural guardian, a combination characteristic of early Rome. He was second in importance only to Jupiter and Neptune and he was the most prominent of the military gods in the religion of the Roman army. Most of his festivals were held in March, the month named for him (Latin Martius), and in October, which began the season for military campaigning and ended the season for farming. From Wikipedia
Information on Onyx:
Onyx was very popular with the ancient Greeks and Romans. The name comes from the Greek word 'onyx', which means nail or claw. The story is that one day the frisky Cupid cut the divine fingernails of Venus with an arrowhead while she was sleeping. He left the clippings scattered on the sand and the fates turned them into stone so that no part of the heavenly body would ever perish. True, black isn't normally the color one associates with fingernails. (Did Venus wear Vamp, perhaps?) But in Greek times, almost all the colors of chalcedony from fingernail white to dark brown and black were called onyx. Later, the Romans narrowed the term to refer to black and dark brown colors only.
The ring is in excellent condition and strong to wear. The circa date is from 1860 to 1870 and is a size 9 ½ at this time but can be resized larger or smaller if needed. Current insured value is $2100.00 as of September 2014.