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A modern-day "Memento Mori" skull ring with the Latin epitaph "Es, Fui; Sum, Eris," crafted in 10K gold.
The ring is made by Jean Jean Vintage from a casting of a ca. 1880s Victorian wax seal, originally in black glass (see 4th photograph). Because the ring is a casting, it can still be used for its original purpose: to stamp or seal. This piece features the somber phrase: "What you are, I once was; what I am now, you will be." In shorthand Latin it appears as: "Es, Fui; Sum, Eris." The moving phrase reminds us of our mortality and is redoubled by the image of death itself, the skull. This phrase was a known epitaph during Roman times, appearing most notably on a tombstone at Fanum Fortunae:
"Viator, viator! Quod tu es, ego fui; quod nunc sum, et tu eris //
"Traveler, traveler! What you are, I once was; what I am now, you will be."
Measurements: face 13mm x 11mm (oval)
band uniform width, 1.5mm.
Approx. 4 grams.
Era: modern casting from a ca. 1880s glass intaglio seal