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Lamps featured on this shirt are part of the 210 known lucernae from the Roman fort at Gerulata and its adjoining civilian settlement. Excavated during the last 50 years from the houses, cemeteries, barracks and fortifications of this Roman outpost on the Danube Limes, they span almost three centuries from AD 80 to AD 350. In 2015, they were published in full for the first time.
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Roman lamps were a characteristic form of interior lighting that burned liquid fuel seeped through a wick to create a controlled flame. Relief decorations have made them appealing objects of minor art in modern collections, but lamps were far more than that. Made by a multitude of producers and brands, with a distribution network spanning three continents, their religious imagery used in worship and death, and as symbols of study and learning, Roman lamps are an effective tool that can be used to discover the ancient economy, culture, and craft organization of Roman provincial life.