A fine Ancient Roman light terracotta oil lamp, featuring a short canal nozzle, a concave discus with one filling hole, and a single applied, pierced handle. The discus appears decorated with a moulded depiction of the winged Roman god of love, Cupid, portrayed in profile, leaning on the club of the hero Hercules. The image is bordered with engraved concentric circles. The reverse features engraved letters forming the maker’s name, NOVIUS. This refers to the Justus family, a prominent family of lamp-makers in the 1st and 2nd centuries AD. Large numbers of lamps bearing this signature have been found in North Africa, with the workshop believed to have been situated in El Djem, Tunisia. This lamp is classified as Loeschcke VIII; Bussière form D X 1.
Date: Circa 1st-2nd Century AD