Oil Lamp with Greek and Arabic Inscriptions, Red ware

Oil Lamp with Greek and Arabic Inscriptions

8th century
Made in Jordan, Gerasa (Jerash)
Red ware
1 15/16 x 2 3/8 x 3 11/16 in. (4.9 x 6.1 x 9.4 cm)
Credit Line:
Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, The Yale Excavations at Gerasa (1929.674)
Not on view
The decoration on the clay lamps, small objects designed for daily use, in the exhibition helps chart the transformation of Byzantium’s southern provinces into lands central to the Islamic world. Largely produced at the important city of Gerasa (Jerash) in Jordan, the lamps came with a variety of decorations—Christian crosses and inscriptions, Greek and Arabic inscriptions on the same lamp, and ones inscribed only in Arabic.
This lamp is inscribed in Greek on the top right shoulder "The light of Christ [is] the Resurrection" and in Arabic on the bottom "In the name of God, the Merciful, the Com[passionate]."
Inscription: In Greek, on the right shoulder: The light of Christ [is] the Resurrection; in Greek, on the left shoulder: Christ; Light; in Arabic, in reverse on the bottom: In the name of God, the Merciful, the Com[passionate]
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Byzantium and Islam: Age of Transition (7th–9th Century)," March 12, 2012–July 8, 2012.