A finely crafted terracotta oil lamp from the Byzantine Empire. The face of Christ (or possibly a saint) is depicted above the central filling hole, and is carefully rendered with details of the facial features and a halo. The central filling hole is also surrounded by further decoration, including a cross.
Date: Circa 9th-11th century AD Condition: Excellent condition
The Byzantine Empire existed as a continuation of the Roman Empire in its eastern provinces, meaning that the form of these oil lamps shows strong similarities to the Roman style. Christianity was the predominant religion in the Byzantine world, and this is reflected in the decoration of the lamp, which could have been used for either domestic or ceremonial purposes.
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