19th Century Iraqi Silver Hanukkah Lamp

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Hand cut strips of silver that have been bent into curvilinear shapes, with semi-circle of petal-form candle sockets, complete with drip-pans. On the backplate in large, bold Hebrew lettering “These lights are holy”. At top, a large pair of birds flank the removable servant light; the birds have been painstakingly engraved with fine details such as feathers. Strong, built-in hook for hanging. Iraq circa 1880. This impressive lamp was likely owned by an Iraqi family of wealth, as the amount of silver alone would have been costly. A similarly designed lamp is in the collection of the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. It was purchased by the museum as part of the famed Steiglitz collection of Judaica, and can be seen in the book “The Stieglitz Collection, Masterpieces of Jewish Art, page 255”. For a discussion of the forms of Iraqi Chanukah lamps, please see pages 180 and 182 of the book “Five Centuries of Hanukkah Lamps from The Jewish Museum: A Catalogue Raisonné”.