Roman large marble fragment depicting a flaming thymaterionR94
A fine white marble architectural fragment decorated in relief with a depiction of an ornate thymaterion supporting a flame.
The thymaterion was a ceremonial stand used for burning incense during religious or spiritual ceremonies. The depiction of this implement on an architectural fragment would suggest that it may have originated from a temple or a shrine within a substantial private building, possibly having formed the support for a thymaterion or censer itself.
The use of thymateria continues in Orthodox and Catholic religion today though they are now known as livanisteria (from the Greek for incense), and probably also influenced the floor-standing elaborate candelabra so often seen in churches.
Roman, c. 1st Century AD
Fragment as shown
51 x 20 x 16 cms
Ex. private collection, Kensington, London, UK; acquired on the London art market during the 1980’s.
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