Eros lamp holder

early 1st century BCE
more object details

General Description

Eros, the Greek god of love, is shown as a beautiful youth with both male and female characteristics. The figure was originally part of a lamp holder and would have had an oil lamp on the tendril he holds in an outstretched hand. The sculpture shares in the expressive, dynamic qualities of later Greek Hellenistic art; it appears to be flying on the beautifully detailed wings. The lamp from which the figure came was probably made in the eastern Mediterranean for a wealthy house or villa in Italy. The bronze has been associated with a trove of Greek luxury goods recovered from an ancient shipwreck near the town of Mahdia on the coast of Tunisia.

Excerpt from

Anne Bromberg, DMA unpublished material.

Related Multimedia

Collections smARTphone video; Bromberg, Anne R. discusses the Greek Eros lamp holder, (DMA collection, 2005.12.A-B.McD)
Learn about Hellenistic Greece.

Web Resources

  • MET
    See an example of a more typical Hellenistic Greek lamp.

  • Wesleyan University
    Read more about ancient oil lamps.