The Lewis Collection of Gems and Rings in the Possession of Corpus Christi  

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The Lewis Collection of Gems and Rings in the Possession of Corpus Christi (1892) is a book by John Henry Middleton.

Published in 1892, Middleton's catalogue describes the extensive collection of engraved gems and rings at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge. Middleton, who was a Professor of Fine Art, describes how these ancient gems were acquired, and outlines how they both exemplify important Greek sculpture and illustrate ancient myths and rituals.

Excerpt on grylli

Pliny, Hist, Nat XXXV. 1 14, uses the word gryllus for a class of grotesque figures first used in painting by Antiphilus of Alexandria. The word also means a cricket, but is commonly used to denote any grotesque monster which is made up of several masks or portions of different animals.

Under the later Roman Empire and even as early as the first century A.D. these ingenious combinations of various birds and beasts were commonly used for signets of an inferior class.

24. Gryllus head very ingeniously made up of three faces and an eagle's head; fine bold work on red jasper.

25. Gryllus head made up of a cock standing on a serpent, a male bearded mask and another bird ; coarse work on red jasper,

26. Gryllus head made of a crow standing on a serpent, a bearded mask, a goose, and minute heads of a ram and a lion, all combined in a most ingenious way to form one bust. In front is BY. Good work on camelian.

On the setting is cut CAESAREA CAPP 1841.

27. A monster made up of an ostrich and a bearded mask. Round it is inscribed A H T E <l>. Rudely cut on a convex piece of chalcedony.

28. Gryllus, made up of a mask and the fore part of a horse ; behind is a helmeted male head, a dolphin and a ram's head. On fine red jasper.

29. Gryllus monster, made up of a bearded mask, a ram's head and a horse's head. Coarse work on carnelian,

30. Gryllus made of a bearded mask, a horse's head, the hind parts of a griffin and the legs of an ostrich; on red jasper.

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