and in late Latin, Laterna
; in late Greek, φανός
). A lantern. Two
bronze lanterns have been found in the ruins of Herculaneum and Pompeii. One of them is
represented in the foregoing illustration. Its form is cylindrical. At the bottom is a
circular plate of metal, resting on three balls. Within is a bronze lamp attached to the
centre of the base, and provided with an extinguisher, shown on the right hand of the lantern.
The plates of translucent horn, forming the sides, probably had no aperture; but the
hemispherical cover may be raised so as to admit the hand and to serve instead of a door, and
it is also perforated with holes through which the smoke might escape. To the two upright
pillars supporting the frame-work, a front view of one of which is shown on the left hand of
the lantern, chains are attached for carrying the lantern by means of the handle at the top.
We learn from Martial (xiv. 61, 62) that bladder was used for lanterns as well as horn. Some
centuries later glass was also substituted. The most transparent horn lanterns were brought
from Carthage (lanternae Punicae
). When the lantern was required for use the
lamp was lighted and placed within it. It was carried by a slave, who was called the lanternarius
or servus praelucens.
When a lantern was
not at hand, a basket (σπυρίδιον
), as a cheaper and commoner
utensil, was taken to hold the lamp.