Naukratis: Greeks in Egypt

Alexandra Villing, Marianne Bergeron, Giorgos Bourogiannis, Alan Johnston, François Leclère, Aurélia Masson and Ross Thomas

With Daniel von Recklinghausen, Jeffrey Spencer, Valerie Smallwood, Virginia Webb and Susan Woodford

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Supported by

The Leverhulme Trust
  • The Shelby White - Leon Levy Program for Archaeological Publications
  • Christian Levett and the Mougins Museum of Classical Art
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Jewellery and mirrors


Ross Iain Thomas and Camille Acosta

The jewellery and mirrors from Naukratis comprise a diverse group of objects that testify to the changing fashions of adornment at Naukratis between its founding in in the late 7th century BC until the end of the 4th century BC. They display a range of influences from Egypt, Persia, Greece, Cyprus, Phoenicia and Carthage, and some of the later examples show local expressions of broader Roman fashions. Despite the relatively poor environmental conditions for the preservation of metals or organics, ancient recycling and modern looting, the diverse uses of jewellery by the inhabitants of Naukratis are reflected in material from domestic, funerary, manufacturing and sanctuary deposits. The discovery of a group of gold and silver jewellery, including objects depicting the Osirian Triad (Isis, Serapis and Horus), suggests the existence of a previously unknown Isis temple active in the late 1st century AD, built on reclaimed land next to the river, not far from the much older sanctuaries of Aphrodite and Hera.

Mercury gilded copper alloy bezel ring depicting Eros, dated c. 350–300 BC. British Museum, 1888,0601.1.