Shell, French, mid-1800's- Nyx, goddess of Night, was a feared goddess and mother of many powerful forces, including Sleep and Death. Nyx is veiled as the night, eyes closed in slumber and crowned with a wreath of sleep-inducing opium poppies. The moon and stars float above her head and her owl companion holds branches of poppies in his talons
from 1840s -- seems like peculiar mixture of goddess imagery on this one -- the moon (Artemis), the pomegranates on the headdress and in the owl's talons (Persephone), and the owl (Athena). Still gorgeous!