Obj. ID: 37532 Chandelier for Sabbath (Judenstern), Nuremberg (Nürnberg), circa 1725
H | Human Figure
O | Ornamentation: | Ornament
J | Jewish man
The following description was prepared by William Gross:
This Sabbath lamp is arguably the finest existing example of a brass Judenstern. The large size and weight is in and of itself unusual. The elaborate incised designs and the extra decorative pieces add to the character. But the addition of a figure dressed in 18th-century Germany Shabbat costume sets this example totally apart. The provenance from the JCR organization after the war assures the authenticity. While this sort of star shaped lamp was the general means of lighting in central Europe some 600 years ago, the Jews were the only ones who continued to use the form after about 1600 and it therefore became known as the "Judenstern". They were mostly crafted in Nuremberg, which was the brass producing center of Germany. The saw tooth device for raising and lowering the lamp and the decorative bowl underneath to catch any oil overflow add to the unique look of the object, which is prominently featured in some of the famous genre paintings of Jewish life painted by Moritz Oppenheim in the last half of the 19th century.