A nicely detailed bright red terracotta oil lamp from Palestine in the Roman Empire. Nice decoration by the handle, possibly a phallus.
Background: Pottery lamps were commonly used as a source of light by all the Romans. Artificial light was used everywhere in the Roman Empire, and pottery oil lamps offered an alternative to candle light. Candles, made from beeswax or tallow, were cheaper to buy but did not last well. Pottery oil lamps were made in three different ways. They could be handmade, wheel made, or made by mould. The use of moulds became increasingly popular, but again consisted of two different methods.
Dimensions: length: 9 cms.
Condition: Complete, surface ware.
Provenance: Ex. Chiswick Auctions, London, Acquired in a 2015 sale.