Two ivory panels from a late antique diptych. On the left panel is Asclepius,the God of Medicine and on the right panel is Hygieia, the goddess of Health. The representation of the two deities especially of Asclepius derives from well known statues in antiquity.. On the left is the god Asclepius is dressed as a philosopher, his serpent twisted up his staff. At his feet to the right as an ox-head and to the left the underworld child-deity Telesphoros, holding an open scroll. On the right panel, there is a more unusual image, a statue of Hygieia, the daughter of Asclepius, with Cupid. The imagery of this possibly consular diptych evokes the old pagan religion while the philosophical symmposium of the Saturnalia, a work written around 430 AD by Macrobius but set more in the 370s, is the context for Asclepius and Hygeia personifying the Sun and the Moon (Salus) as described in a passage from Macrobius' Saturnalia. The philosophical and intellectual circles of Rome around 430s used the old pagan gods to express their new Neo-Platonic ideas.
The existence of the diptych is attested from about AD 1500, among drawings of items in the Gaddi collection. The diptych remained with the Gaddi family until the 1750s. By about 1800 the diptych was in the collection of Caronni who sold it to Count Mihály Wiczay of Hédervár in south-west Hungary. Wiczay in turn sold it to Gabor Fejérváry. Fejérváry (1781-1851) was born in the modern-day Slovak Republic. In 1851 Fejérváry's collection was bequeathed to his nephew, Ferenc Pulszky, who sold the collection to Joseph Mayer in 1855.