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Don't buy a Cameo before you read this!
"10 Things You Should Know..."

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Cameo Jewelry Articles



 By Preston Reuther Master Wire Sculptor

In Greek Mythology Psyche was the daughter of a king and queen and as a grown woman was said to be the most beautiful woman in the land. They say she was so beautiful that people compared her to Aphrodite who actually held that position at the time and was the goddess of love and beauty.

Aphrodite was believed to be the most beautiful goddess and woman who ever walked the earth and Psyche made her very, very jealous. All of the gods and men who once loved and adored Aphrodite was now infatuated with Psyche. This created a major problem and made Aphrodite extremely jealous and revengeful. (SEE A SHELL CAMEO OF PSYCHE BELOW).



To do away with Psyche, Aphrodite asked Eros, her son, to make Psyche fall in love with the most ugliest man to be found in the world. So. Eros shoots his golden arrows to make this couple fall in love but he accidentally stuck himself with one of his own love arrows and immediately fell in love with Psyche himself.

So they got married and had a daughter named Hedone. (This is the origin of the word hedonistic) In Roman mythology Hedone is seen as the personification of lust. Aphrodite said she would allow the marriage on one condition. And that is if Psyche could take her challenge and pass.

Psyche was told to live with her husband without knowing who he was or how he looked. . Psyche's 2 sisters Orual and Thessela played a trick on her and made her believe that her husband might be an ugly monster. So she lit a candle and looked at his face and found out he was Eros. When that occurred Eros fled. Psyche then appeals to Aphrodite and Aphrodite said Psyche could get her husband to return if she completed four tasks.

One of the tasks was to retrieve beauty from Persephone and bring it back to Aphrodite. Psyche was curious about this task and opened the box of beauty, only to discover that the box was full of sleep instead. So Eros finds Psyche in a deep sleep and asks Zeus to get her awake again and grant her eternal life. Psyche is now immortal and a good wife for Eros, and Aphrodite agrees. And by Psyche being immortal means she won't have any attention from mortal men; Aphrodite is then pleased that Psyche will no longer have the attention she once had.

NOTE: On Greek vases or antique cameo Psyche is seen in the shape of a bird with a human head, sometimes with a beard,  a cock or butterfly, or a small human figure and often with butterfly wings.



Preston Reuther has been collecting, showing and selling cameos for over 20 years. He has written several e-books and produced over 34 jewelry making dvds, 150 videos and over 1000 articles on the jewelry making process.Visit his  antique cameo collection  at or Email him  at  or call




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