Your Guide to Buying an Antique Oil Lamp

It used animal fat as fuel and was used to provide light in cave dwellings years BC. The oil lamp is one of the oldest inventions of mankind, evidence dating between 15, to 12, years before Christ. At this time civilization, as we identify it, was unknown and prehistoric man inhabited cave-like environments. One characteristic prehistoric lamp was found in the cave of Lasceau, located in the area of Dordonis in France. Discovered in , this cave was inhabited between 15, and 10, BC. Some archaeologists believe that the first oil lamps appeared as early as 70, years before Christ. Most of these oil lamps were made of stone and burned animal fat.

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Oil Lamps in the Ancient World For thousands of years small oil lamps were used for light in homes, temples, taverns, and tombs. At least as far back as 3, BC, oil lamps are known to have been in use, though crude by standards reached in the first few centuries AD. Oil may have been used as a light source even further back, in naturally cupped stone containers, and later, in Mesopotamia, in sea-shells.

The common use of pottery containers for oil lamps, however, was not to flourish until perhaps the 8th or 7th centuries BC. At first, pottery lamps were simple wheel-thrown saucers. The wick, often of flax, was immersed in the oil and draped on the saucer’s rim.

This collection includes five different ancient Roman bronze coins dating from CE, together with a genuine ancient Roman oil lamp dating from BCE to CE. The lamp that you receive is a completely unique artifact, similar to the example images shown here.

Description and History of Oil Lamps Roman Oil Lamps Defined A lamp is a device that holds and burns fuel, typically oil, as a means of producing light. Although oil lamps have taken on a variety of shapes and sizes throughout history, the basic required components are a wick, fuel, a reservoir for fuel, and an air supply to maintain a flame.

Diagram of oil lamp features Westenholz, History Some of the earliest lamps, dating to the Upper Paleolithic, were stones with depressions in which animal fats were likely burned as a source of light. Shells, such as conch or oyster, were also employed as lamps, and even may have served as the prototype for early lamp forms. Initially, they took the form of a saucer with a floating wick. Soon after, these saucers began to develop a pinched or folded rim which resulted in a nozzle and served the purpose of holding the wick in place, thus controlling the flame as well as the smoke.

As they evolved, clay lamps became more enclosed, moving from a pinched nozzle to a bridged nozzle, and sporting the addition of a rim. These changes aided in reducing the amount of oil lost through spillage.

Registered Designs

Object Groups Mining Lights and Hats The depth, the dark, and the dangers inherent in mining created a uniquely dangerous working environment for the miner. Miners faced death from collapsing mines, oxygen deprivation, and haulage accidents, with the specter of fatal lung disease remaining even after the miner had left the mines.

Without light there was no sight, no work, and no wages. But this essential light was also lethal. Miners often carried open flames into the mines in the form of candles and hanging lamps, and later wore the open flames of carbide lamps and oil-wick lamps on their caps and helmets.

Design Registration Numbers. The system of registering designs with a specific number was introduced at the end of It superseded the previous ‘Diamond’ registrations.

This includes everything from small finger-lamps to multicolored banquet lamps. New lamps continue to be made overseas as well as here in America. The new kerosene lamps are generally quite good quality. Like any other mass produced items, however, pattern detail and overall quality vary from piece to piece. One of the catalogs from a new lamp wholesaler claims its lamps “were made using the original antique lamps as models. Font-to-Base Joints The easiest first test to catch new glass lamps is to simply expose them to black light.

The vast majority of all new glass lamp fonts and bases are glued together. Vintage glass kerosene lamps were fused together when the glass was hot.

Antique Lighting

Most made after the mid s have a manufacturing date stamped on them, usually on the bottom or the bottom edge of the fount tank. To date your lantern, first make sure the fuel cap is down tight and then turn the lantern upside-down and look at the bottom of the fount. Figure 1 Bottom of Model A lantern, October The most common location and method of date stamping, used since the late s, is just off-center on the very bottom of the fount. You will see two sets of numbers, one set left and one set right of center.

The oil lamp is one of the oldest inventions of mankind, evidence dating between to years before Christ.

This blog is a behind the scenes look at the Roman Baths in Bath. We hope you enjoy reading our stories about life surrounding the Roman Baths. Wednesday, 5 October Oil Lamps- Lighting Antiquity Lighting has always been important throughout the history of mankind. A long time ago our ancestors began finding ways to “illuminate their lives” – and one way they did this was with elaborate oil lamps. The oil lamp is an old invention, the earliest date from between 15, to 12, BC.

They have been found in Egypt, dating to around 4, BC.

How to repair an oil lamp

Old and New Burners Miniature glass oil-burning lamps were popular from the last quarter of the 19th century through the first quarter of the 20th century, ca. There is some debate over the exact use of miniature lamps. Collectors often use the names courting lamps, night lights, children’s lamps or toy lamps depending on what purpose they believe the original lamps served.

Regardless of original use, miniature lamps are a popular collectible in high demand.

A particularly special surprise that was discovered while excavating the trail was an intact oil lamp decorated with the menorah symbol, dating to the Byzantine or Umayyad periods.

Considerations Brass oil lamp with bonnet shade One of the more traditional styles of oil lamp and dates to the early Edwardian period. Has a duplex burner. This design of oil lamp is becoming rare. Victorian ceramic vase oil lamp Heavy ceramic and brass oil lamp with a gorgeous flower design on the vase base. Clear glass allows the flame to be viewed. The shade holder can be removed. Uses paraffin in the fuel reservoir. Brass hand oil lamp Polished brass stand with a decorative clear glass chimney.

Easy to carry or mount on the wall. They are widely manufactured and have no retaining value. Factors to Consider When Buying an Antique Oil Lamp When buying an antique oil lamp as an investment it is imperative to find out whether or not the lamp is in functioning order. This section of the guide provides the factors that must be considered before buying an antique oil lamp. Function — Does the antique oil lamp work? If it does then it will be more valuable should it be sold in the future to an antiques collector or dealer.

Early Mantles and their boxes over time

The image of Zeus on a throne is said to be portrayed on the other side. Minted coins help experts date finds. Israel Antiquities Authority It is thought the coins and treasures were stashed by the ancient owners during political unrest, assumedly to be retrieved when it was safe to do so. Pottery and jewelry dating to 2, years ago has been discovered in a cave in northern Israel.

Israel Antiquities Authority It seems the original owners never returned, and the rare items remained behind as a time capsule, giving a glimpse into the lives of possible refugees from over 2, years ago.

Robert Edwin Dietz first began selling whale oil and camphene lamps and lanterns in at the age of Robert and his brother Michael patented the first practical flat wick burner especially designed for the then new fuel oil, kerosene, in

Double-nozzled terracotta oil lamp found in Samaria The following are the main external parts of a terra-cotta lamp: Shoulder Pouring hole The hole through which fuel is put inside the fuel chamber. The width ranges from 0. There may be single or multiple holes. Wick hole, and the nozzle. It may be just an opening in the body of the lamp, or an elongated nozzle. In some specific types of lamps, there is a groove on the superior aspect of the nozzle that runs along to the pouring hole to re-collect the oozing oil from the wick.

Handle Lamps can come with or without a handle.

How to Collect Oil Lamps : Antique Oil Lamp Burners: Center Chimney Burners, Modern Conversions