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HOME : Classical Antiquities : Ancient Jewelry : Hellenistic Bronze Theatrical Mask
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Hellenistic Bronze Theatrical Mask - FJ.6641
Origin: Mediterranean
Circa: 300 BC to 100 BC

Collection: Classical
Style: Hellenistic
Medium: Bronze-Gold

Location: UAE
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This Ancient Bronze Fragment Has Been Set in a Modern 18 Karat Gold Ring

Masks represent a collective need to explain ideas and events of the world through mimic. All cultures imitate animals, their gods, and their devils. This is a basic solidification of primitive religion and worship. By imitating real people within the society, each culture exhibits a growth of roots within the real world. This basis of drama within reality portrays the human vocation in order to understand our common experience of living. Theater is more than just entertainment. Theater is a collabrative effort of all facets of production, both on stage and off stage, working together to create a performance event. Theatre realizes the fantasies of our dreams in order to explain the mysteries of reality and being. Masks, and to a lesser degree costumes and setting, facilitate the fantasy that theatre depends on. Without some type of physical modification, true transformation is impossible. Therefore, the theatrical mask is the basis of theater and dramatic impersonation.

Greece is the traditional birthplace of modern theatre. The masses gathered together in amphitheatres carved into hillsides to watch their world and reality mimicked and mocked. However, comedies were not the only offerings, tragedies also taught moralizing lessons about life. Theatre tells us about ourselves by allowing us to critically examine how we act in real life by watching others pretend to act in a fantasy. While the entertainment factor of theatre explains its universal popularity, the thought provoking aspect of plays explains the durability and lasting value of theatre, so much so that an Ancient Greek tragedies such as Sophocles’ Oedipus is as relevant today as two thousand years ago. This ring recalls the glories of Greek theatre. The grinning mask is a clear caricature of human emotions. Such a mask facilitates the mystical transformation that turns an actor into a character. In the end, theatre, like the mask demonstrates, distills life into basic comprehensible emotions. Humor, sadness, pride, and anger; these feelings are all easily conveyed just by dawning a mask. May the joy and laughter depicted on this bronze mask fill the life of the wearer with such pleasant spirits.
- (FJ.6641)


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