Artist unknown / Oil lamp / 1st century B.C. - 1st century A.D.Artist unknown
Oil lamp
1st century B.C. - 1st century A.D.

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Creator Name: Unknown
Creator Nationality: European; Southern European; Roman
Creator Role: Artist
Creator Name-CRT: Artist unknown
Title: Oil lamp
View: front
Creation Start Date: -10
Creation End Date: 99
Creation Date: 1st century B.C. - 1st century A.D.
Object Type: Decorative Arts and Utilitarian Objects
Classification Term: Bronze
Materials and Techniques: bronze
Dimensions: H.9-1/16 x W.9-7/16 x D.14-1/2 in.
AMICA Contributor: The Minneapolis Institute of Arts
Owner Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
ID Number: 99.84.1
Credit Line: Gift of Ruth and Bruce Dayton

Ancient lamps were made from a variety of materials including clay, glass, silver, gold and bronze. These lamps had two primary parts: a basin for fuel and a nozzle through which a fibrous wick fed fuel to the flame. Olive oil was the primary fuel, although other types of oil probably were used in areas where olives did not grow. While the single-nozzle lamp was the most common, multiple-nozzle lamps, like this one, produced more light.

Decoration on bronze lamps, most often found on the handle, typically consists of animal, floral and theatrical mask motifs. In the late 1st century BC the volute lamp shape was developed, in which stylized curls flank each side of the nozzle at its juncture with the lamp body. In this example, floral forms replace the volutes.

AMICA ID: MIA_.99.84.1
Component Measured: overall
Measurement Unit: in
AMICA Library Year: 2001
Media Metadata Rights: ?The Minneapolis Institute of Arts

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