Roman Terracotta Multi-Nozzle Oil Lamp

£ 695.00

A Roman terracotta oil lamp featuring a circular body with three slender nozzles and a vertical loop handle. The lamp features a small filling-hole surrounded by a sunken rosette motif framed by three concentric circles. The prominent loop handle also displays two grooves, creating a ridged effect. Each nozzle is flanked by two single volutes and is round-tipped. The reverse of the oil lamp is unadorned except for two concentric circles in the centre of the base.


Date: Circa 1st Century AD
Provenance: Ex German collection, German Art Market.
Condition: Fine condition, some earthly encrustations and signs of ageing to the surface.


SKU: AH-996 Category: Tags: ,

A lamp with more than two nozzles was called a polymyxus. The number of nozzles was not limited however, those with only one hole have been more commonly found. Oil lamps were used by the Romans for mainly three reasons; to light private and public spaces, to give as offerings in temples and to the gods and to be placed within a grave or funerary context. As well as linear, geometric and circular designs, favourite subjects for decoration of oil lamps included gods and mythological scenes, scenes from everyday life, gladiatorial depictions, drawings relating to entertainment and theatre, and various animals, fish and birds.


Weight 78.7 g
Dimensions L 12.5 x W 10.5 cm

Pottery and Porcelain


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