Oil lamp with Eros or water carrier motif on the discus. Major features of the lamp are present and complete (handle, filing hole, rim, oil reservoir, nozzle, shoulder), with a break to the wick hole and mouth, resulting in loss of ca 50% of the area. Fabric mid brown with external red slip, lamp is thinly and patchily covered in sediment and encrustations suggesting burial in the earth. Makers mark on base is difficult to identify.
30 BCE-295 CE
H50mm x W78mm x D106mm
Maker's mark on base of lamp, however this is difficult to discern.
History and use
The need to extend daylight hours has always been with us. Before the advent of electricity, allowing a space to be illuminated with the simple flick of a switch, light was achieved by the use of a candle or a lamp. Artificial lighting via candles and lamps was widespread through the ancient world. Lamps were utilised in private and public buildings, in temples and sanctuaries, in street lighting and in ceremonies.