ROMAN OIL LAMP WITH MAKERS MARK
Measurements: 10.2 cm – height, 7 cm - width
Description: A finely decorated Ancient Roman pottery oil lamp, featuring a pierced, raised and rounded handle, a short canal nozzle and one filling hole. The discus displays the depiction of a dancing figure, surrounded by two concentric circles. The figure is shown wearing a long draped vest and stepping right while holding a tambourine or a wreath. The movement and dynamism of the figure are emphasized by the folds of the dress, rendered through a series of engraved lines.
The lamp is marked to the underside with the makes’s mark, ‘MNOVIVST'. This is a well-known oil lamp manufacturer, Marcus Novius Justus, who operated a workshop in what is now Tunisia in North Africa during the 2nd Century AD.
Pottery oil lamps were used as a source of light by all Romans and they then became one of the most common household items of the Roman Empire. Roman oil lamps were also buried in tombs and graves along with pottery, jewellery, and other symbolic gifts.
Period: Roman colonies of North Africa, circa 2nd Century AD
Condition: Very fine condition. Signs of aging on the surface.