Weekly Auctions of Exceptional Items
0 selections
Log In
0 selections
lots of lots
Lot 0014
**Originally Listed At $1200**

Rome, ca. 1st century CE. This adorable piece would have plugged a bronze lamp; it has been cast in the shape of a crouched mouse with his paws raised to his mouth, as if he is gnawing on a piece of bread. His curled tail forms a hole to which he would have been attached to the lamp to prevent the escape of any excess oil. Mice were a constant of Roman life (especially as Romans were not fans of cats) and the maker of this plug would have been acknowledging the very common problem of mice eating wicks and drinking lamp oil, a common complaint documented in many ancient texts. Mice also were a feature of Roman literature and art that depicted mice undertaking human activities proportional to their size. Size: 1.4" L x 1.9" W x 1" H (3.6 cm x 4.8 cm x 2.5 cm).

Provenance: private New Jersey USA collection, acquired over twenty years ago

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

We ship worldwide to most countries and handle all shipping in-house for your convenience.



Slight patina and some wear, but form and finer details are clear.

Buyer's Premium

  • 24.5%

Roman Bronze Lamp Finial - Adorable Mouse

Estimate $1,000 - $1,500Feb 1, 2018
Louisville, CO, USA