III. Roman-Period Clay Lamps / Types from both Western and Eastern Provinces of the Roman Empire / Augustan and Imperial Lamps

Loeschcke type XI (achtförmige Lampen)


Lamps of this type consist of two communicating bowls with vertical walls and a flat bottom. The bigger bowl would receive tallow as a fuel, and the much smaller one would hold the wick. The general shape evokes the number eight, hence the German appellation achtförmige Lampen (figure-eight lamps). They are found essentially in Britain, Gaul, and Germany, where they are especially numerous: 230 examples have been found in Trier alone, and fourteen in Vindonissa (see Bailey BM III, Q 1639, for more refs. concerning Germany). The two Getty examples both have a base-ring. Cat. 459 has a band handle, cat. 460 a ring handle. Handles were made separately, then applied to the lamp made on the potter’s wheel. According to Loeschcke, examples with a band handle are older than those with a ring handle. The production of these lamps covers a time span from the second half of first century to the first half of second century A.D.

Banner image: Detail of cat. 459