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A Roman reddish-brown glazed terracotta oil lamp with handle at the rear. The discus is decorated with a Murmillo gladiator, in high relief, stands posing in a victorious stance. He holds the gladius (short sword) in right hand, a scutum (semi-cylindrical shield with horizontal centre grip of the type used by the Roman infantry) in left. Unlike the average Imperial soldier, he wears the short ocrea (greave) to protect the part of his left leg that is not covered by the scutum, as this leg is nearest to the opponent, and to avoid exposing the right arm during the execution of an attack, he also wears an arm guard or manica. To the left of the column, we can just discern the letters PARDL (?) which have been lightly inscribed onto the edge of the discus in ancient times.

An interesting type which could warrant further research.


Circa 2nd century AD.


Very Fine condition.

Length of lamp 11.6 cms (4.6 ins).


Provenance: Published. Item 69: Mark Wieclaw Collection (1980's-2019); Harlan J. Berk sale May 2019.


For similar, see item 747: Lampes de Carthage: Jean Deneauve.

Roman gladiator oil lamp

SKU: Y054

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