Engraved gems were used by the Greeks as seals and amulets, but were primarily valued as ornaments. Their iconography was drawn from a wide range of motifs and standard devices current in other art forms. In the Hellenistic period gem cutters remained faithful to the classical tradition, butwere able to develop new subjects and styles. Portraits, especially of royalty, became the commonest subject in glyptic after Alexander, a practice that continued through the Roman period and was still popular with patrons and artists of the Renaissance and even later. This volume follows the development of gem engraving from Alexander's conquest of the East to the Augustan period. Hellenistic gems are studied in their archaeological and historical context: evidence on their use, significance, and value; questions of technique and style; and problems ofchronology and distribution. Special sections have been devoted to patronage of gem-engravers and the relationship of gem-cutting with other miniaturist arts and coinage.