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Mosque lamp

Mosque lamp

  • Place of origin:

    Egypt (possibly, made)
    Syria (possibly, made)

  • Date:

    1342-1345 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Glass, gilded and enamelled

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Islamic Middle East, Room 42, The Jameel Gallery, case WE7, shelf 1

This footed lamp is made of greyish colourless glass, decorated with red, white and blue enamels. It has a flared base and a slightly less flaring neck. The inscriptions and blazons on it can be related to Shibl al-Daula Kafur al-Rumi, who was the treasurer of the Mamluk Sultan of Egypt, al-Salih Isma’il (1342-1345). It was probably ordered to form part of the decorative lighting for a building commissioned by Kafur al-Rumi on behalf of this ruler.

Physical description

Footed lamp of greyish colorless glass decorated with red, white, blue enamels. Flared base and less flared neck. Inscriptions and blazon of Shibl al-Daula Kafur al-Rumi, treasurer to the Mamluk Sultan al-Salih Isma`il (1342-45)

Place of Origin

Egypt (possibly, made)
Syria (possibly, made)


1342-1345 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Glass, gilded and enamelled

Marks and inscriptions

Inscriptions and blazon of Shibl al-Daula Kafur al-Rumi, treasurer to the Mamluk Sultan al-Salih Isma'il (1342-45)
Decoration; Arabic; naskhi; on body


Height: 26 cm, Width: 17 cm maximum

Object history note

Ordered for a building commissioned by Kafur al-Rumi, Treasurer to the Mamluk Sultan of Egypt al-Salih Ismail (1342-45).

Descriptive line

Lamp with inscriptions naming the Mamluk official Kafur al-Rumi, Egypt, 1342-5.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Lamm (1930; 200:2), Wiet (1929;p.164,no.51), Mayer (Saracenic Heraldry; p.135)
pp.24, 45, 49, 52
Tim Stanley (ed.), with Mariam Rosser-Owen and Stephen Vernoit, Palace and Mosque: Islamic Art from the Middle East, London, V&A Publications, 2004

Labels and date

Two Glass Lamps
Egypt or Syria
Around 1250 and 1342-5

The lamp on the left is decorated with three mounted falconers. The presence of human figures indicates that it was made for a domestic setting. The lamp on the right has no figures. It was probably commissioned for a religious institution by a Mamluk official called Kafur al-Rumi, who is named in the inscriptions.

Enamelled and gilded glass

Museum nos. 330-1900; 6820-1860 [Jameel Gallery]

Production Note

date: 'probably'


Glass; Enamel; Gilt


Firing; Painting; Gilding

Subjects depicted

Geometric patterns


Islam; Glass; Lighting


Middle East Section

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