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Oil lamp with Young Eros by Filippo Pacetti
Oil lamp with Young Eros by Filippo Pacetti - Lighting Style Empire Oil lamp with Young Eros by Filippo Pacetti - Oil lamp with Young Eros by Filippo Pacetti - Empire
Ref : 111880
7 500 €
Period :
19th century
Artist :
Filippo Pacetti
Provenance :
Medium :
Silver, gilt and patinated bronze
Dimensions :
H. 17.72 inch | Ø 4.72 inch
Lighting  - Oil lamp with Young Eros by Filippo Pacetti 19th century - Oil lamp with Young Eros by Filippo Pacetti
Galerie Lamy Chabolle

Decorative art from 18th to 20th century

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Oil lamp with Young Eros by Filippo Pacetti

Eros oil lamp in silver and bronze by Filippo Pacetti.
Silver, gilded and patinated bronze, silk.
h. 45 cm; d. 12 cm (base); h. 26 cm (Eros).

Silver and patinated and gilded bronze oil lamp depicting adolescent Eros, holding an antique-style lamp in his right hand and a silk screen in his left. Eros rests on a silver terrace adorned with two finely carved and chased birds.

The silver terrace is stamped with three hallmarks : a title hallmark, a guarantee hallmark and a maker's mark. The first two hallmarks, title and guarantee, are the hallmarks imposed by imperial decree on November 1, 1809 on the Papal States annexed in 1809 and therefore on Rome, decreed “imperial and free city”. The third hallmark is the maker's mark of silversmith Filippo Pacetti, active in Rome from 1809 to 1857. These three hallmarks inscribed on the silver base of this lamp date its origin from 1810, when imperial guarantee hallmarks were imposed by decree in Rome, to 1814, when the hallmarks then in force in France fell out of use in the conquered countries, after which the imperial hallmarks were replaced by pontifical hallmarks.

An arrow and bow, attributes of Eros or Cupid, are strewn on the same terrace.

The figure of Eros is probably imitated from the type of Eros by Praxiteles, also known as Eros Centocelle, not a child but an adolescent Eros, whose wiggling body position suggests that he was carrying a bow and arrow, or some other attribute, in his hands. This Eros, with missing arms, forearms and legs, identified by Visconti as the Cupido of Pario, or Eros of Parion cited by Pliny the Elder, was discovered in 1772 in Rome, in the Centocelle area, by the painter Gavin Hamilton. In addition to this marble, now preserved in the Museo Pio Clementino, there are several (Furtwängler counted seven of them as early as 1893) antique statues of the Eros Praxiteles or Centocelle, including a so-called Eros Farnese, discovered in 1889 and preserved in the Louvre, with his right arm raised above his head and his left arm bent at chest height. He holds crowns in each hand, brought back at the end of the XIXth century. There is another marble of the Eros Praxiteles type in the Louvre : a Borghese Genius, this one discovered in 1594, and which bears one of the distinctive features of statues said to be of the Eros Praxiteles type, namely sculpted or added wings on the back.

The wings of the Eros on this oil lamp are made of finely chased gilt bronze : the detail of the feathers and feather barbs can be seen, and the material is amatized, to render the downy appearance of the wings.

This type of oil lamp depicting an Eros or Cupid, arms raised, resting on a single leg, seems to have been fashionable among Italian silversmiths at the turn of the XIX? century. There are examples of similar oil lamps attributed to Giovacchino Belli, a silversmith active in Rome at the same period, or to Pietro Paolo Spagna, also a Roman silversmith but later.


Adolf Furtwängler, Meisterwerke der griechischen Plastik. Kunstgeschichtliche Untersuchungen, Leipzig, 1893.

Pliny the Elder, Naturalis historia, lib. XXXVI, trans. Bloch, Paris, 1961.

Charles Oman, Italian Secular Silver, London, 1962.

Walter van Dievoet, « Les poinçons d’argent en France et dans les pays conquis de la Révolution à le fin de l’Empire », in Poinçons de garantie internationaux pour l'argent, Paris, 1995.

Pierre Milza, Histoire de l'Italie, Paris, 2013.

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