1.1 The Bronze Ages (2200-1200 BCE)
The first known lamps are simple wheel made bowls, with a slight pinch on four sides for the wick. Later, lamps have only one pinch for the wick. These types of lamps differ in the shape of the rim, the general shape of the bowl and the shape of the base.


IB. Intermediate Bronze Age lamps (EBIV/MBI) The earliest lamps known are the four wick lamps (nos. 1-4). These lamps are made from large bowls with four shallow pinches for wicks.


MB. Middle Bronze Age lamps (MB) Although the four wick lamps continue into the MB period, most of the MB lamps have one wick. In the early MB period the pinch is shallow, while later on it becomes more prominent and the mouth protrudes from the lamps body. The bases are simple, flat, or round.

 LB. Late Bronze Age lamps (LB) In the early Late Bronze period (LB1) the lamps are similar to the MB lamps. Later on (LB2-3) the lamps change; the bowl is deeper and larger, the spout becomes sharper and the pinch for the wick almost closes the sides, causing the spout to be pointed. The base is simple, usually flat.

1.2 The Iron Age (1200-560 BCE)

During the Iron Age in Israel there are several variants of lamps, which do not only belong to different periods but also have different distributions. Moreover, some of the variants appear only in one area and are missing in other areas. The lamps presented in the catalogue represent only some of the Iron Age variants.


In the early Iron Age lamps from the LB period continue to appear and there are two other types of lamps. The first type, which appears only in northern Israel, is small and has a flat base. The second type, which appears throughout Israel, is larger than the previous type and has a round base. This type continues into the Iron Age II.


During the later part of the Iron Age there are two types of lamps. The first type, which appears throughout Israel, is small, with a wide rim and a wide base. The second type, which appears only in southern Israel, has a relatively small, shallow bowl with a thick and high discus base.

1.3 The Persian Period

Only one type of Persian period lamps is represented in the catalogue. These large lamps have thin sides and a deep pinch, which flattens the mouth and makes it protrude outward.