Oil - Lamp
Rome; early Christian; 4th c.
In the shallow channel running from the disc of the lamp to the nose there is a cross. The monogram and cross suggest that the scene is an illustration of the Old Testament Story of Joshua who with Caleb went to "spy out" the promised land of Canaan (Numbers 13, 2-23). This event was the first and one of the most important in the life of Joshua, one of the heroes of the Old Testament, Moses' assistant and successor. The lamp is one of the pear-shaped lamps whose production began in the 4th c., influenced by Alexandria.