This is a popular theme depicting the son of Poseidon, Taras – legendary founder of the Greek colony of Taras (later known as Tarentum), who is similarly shown on the colony’s coinage. Taras is said to have travelled across the sea from the cape of Taenarum to the south of Italy, riding on a dolphin, where he founded Tarentum.
Roman Lamp with Boy on a Dolphin
A Roman pottery oil lamp featuring a volute nozzle and large discus. The discus is decorated with a youth riding a dolphin, and has a filling hole at its centre. Inscribed concentric circles frame the decorative scene, and the lamp stands on a ringed base.
Provenance: From the collection of Arno Jumpertz, Leverkusen, Germany, 1924-1984. Much of the collection was exhibited at Neus museum, 1985.
Condition: Very Fine condition; a few light earthy accretions.