cameo

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cameo

(kăm`ēō), small relief carving, usually on striated precious or semiprecious stones or on shell. The design, often a portrait head, is commonly cut in the light-colored vein, and the dark one is left as the background. Glass of two colors in layers may be cameo-cut; a famous Roman example is the Portland vasePortland vase,
a Roman glass vase, known also as the Barberini vase. It is an unusually fine work of the late Augustan era (early 1st cent. B.C.). About 10 in. (25 cm) high and 22 in.
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. The art originated in Asia as a decoration on the reverse side of seals. The Greeks were noted for their exquisite designs and cutting on jewelry and on decorations for jewel caskets, vases, cups, and candelabra. The Romans were adept cutters, and Rome remains a center of experts in this art. The art was revived during the Renaissance, and cameo jewelry was a vogue of the Victorian era.

cameo

[′kam·ē·ō]
(lapidary)
A type of carved gemstone in which the background is cut away to leave the subject in relief.

cameo

1. 
a. a medallion, as on a brooch or ring, with a profile head carved in relief
b. (as modifier): a cameo necklace
2. 
a. a single and often brief dramatic scene played by a well-known actor or actress in a film or television play
b. (as modifier): a cameo role
3. 
a. a short literary work or dramatic sketch
b. (as modifier): a cameo sketch