The small, hand-held, wick-burning oil lamp was the main source of light for the ancient world, being not only the most efficient but also the most economical. Dating from the Hellenistic Period, this is one of the earliest examples of an oil lamp with a closed top which replaced the shallower open top lamps which had been developing since the Iron Age. The closed top was a development introduced to prevent the spillage of oil from the saucer which would evolve even further through the Roman and Byzantine periods.
Holy Land Oil Lamp
A light clay oil lamp from the Holy Land, featuring a shallow bowl with its sides pinched together to create a small spout at the front for the wick, a lager opening at the rear and a flat rounded base. Black soot deposits can be observed around the wick hole.
Condition: Fine condition.