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Lot 0061A
Roman, early Imperial Period, ca. 1st century CE. A beautiful cast-leaded-bronze oil lamp in the shape of a stylized right foot wearing an intricate sandal with several thinly incised straps on top. The slender foot has a crested top, five veristic toes with recessed nails, a protruding ankle, a rounded heel, and a thick sandal sole underneath. An upswept, heart-shaped wick spout protrudes out from beneath the ball of the foot, and a petite suspension ring is situated between the second and third toes. The circular ankle top doubles as the lamp's fill hole and was at one time covered by a hinged lid, and a second suspension loop rests atop the thumb rest that curves above a circular ring handle. Matte layers of green and brown patina envelop the entire composition and imbue it with an attractive presentation evocative of ancient Rome. Size: 6.125" L x 1.3" W x 2.625" H (15.6 cm x 3.3 cm x 6.7 cm).

Foot-form vessels were typically intended for votive purposes meant to symbolize an afflicted body part, and bronze lamps like this example were typically owned by wealthy families.

A stylistically similar example, of a slightly larger size, hammered for $9,375 at Christie's, New York "Antiquities" auction (sale 2007, June 4, 2008, lot 252).

Provenance: private East Coast, USA collection; ex-Richard Wagner collection, Cape Cod, Massachusetts, USA, collected in the 1960s

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Loss to original lid on top of ankle as well as area of one corresponding suspension loop as shown. Minor abrasions, light encrustations, and softening to some finer details. Nice earthen deposits as well as great patina throughout.

Buyer's Premium

  • 24.5%

Roman Leaded Bronze Oil Lamp of Foot Form

Estimate $3,000 - $4,500Sep 26
Artemis Gallerybadge TOP RATED
Louisville, CO, USA