So I fired up Google Images and found a treasure trove of jewelry that is stunningly, breathtakingly, heartbreakingly beautiful. The workmanship on them is beyond all belief; the gold is so cunningly wrought, the gems so spectacular, the iconography powerful, dramatic, and arresting. I had to stop and just stare in awe before I could even download any of the images.
Out of all the baubles I found, I gave my Aphrodite earrings, a necklace, two bracelets, and a finger ring. The snake bracelet on her upper arm is from the Hellenistic period of the late 4th to 3rd century BCE. Many versions of it exist, but all consist of one or two serpents with a "Herakles knot" between two semi-coiled snakes. Many examples have a jewel on top of the knot; this particular piece was sold by Christies auction house in 2005 for $52,000.
Her other jewelry isn't showing up on Google Images the way they did when I first found them; who knows why? But I have all these pictures saved on my hard drive.
I had to simplify everything a bit so it would fit into a picture which is only 8.5 by 11 inches in total. In the case of the finger ring, I had to simplify a lot - I ended up with just a simple circular jewel on a band, nothing like the elaborate, gaudy confection shown in the lower right of the picture above. Makes me wonder if you could even bend your finger if you were wearing that monster. All the ancient jewels are what is called "cabochon" style - that's a gem that's just polished, but not cut. Faceted jewelry didn't exist until sometime in the Middle Ages. But I drew facets on Aphrodite's ring jewel so people would understand what it was supposed to be.
If you want to see more of this rad ancient jewelry, search for it on Google Images or visit Pinterest and search on "ancient jewelry." You will be amazed.