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Why we use lamps, lanterns,
candles and heaters
by "A lantern lover"
I have about 30 miscellaneous lanterns I have
collected over the years. I far prefer candle or lantern light, it
calms and is gentle. Consider the difference between a candle lit
dinner table or drawing room over even the the most subtle of
electric lighting in the same venue. People seem enchanted by the
allure of the warming, gentle glow of even a small, wavering,
radiant flame. Perhaps there is a curious, primordial resonance to
fire. I am fortunate (or not) to live in an 1830 captains house in
Mass with 6 fireplaces. Guests are mesmerized and seemingly more
gentle when seated around a fire. Think of the appeal of fire
pits, bon fires, even bbqs.
I wax on. There is, in my opinion, an innate human attraction to
flame /light/ fire/warmth. This is not hard to understand.
Perhaps lanterns are a remembrance/talisman of something from a
long time ago. Why do people from all over the world still light
fires and lamps and candles when they don't need them?
Many human celebrations involve fire from the Yule Log to
fireworks. The realization and eventual mastery of fire is a story
The lantern represents the mastery and "capturing" of this
seemingly life giving force. It also made flame "transportable".
It is not hard to understand why so many of the worlds most
talented designers have bent their talents toward this task.
There is the art of the lantern and the question of "why". The
answer may lay in our attraction to "the flame" which on one hand
enhances our lives, and on the other, destroys it.
Enough philosophy for tonight.
Be well, "A lantern lover" from Mass.
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Information on lamps:
Center Draft Kerosene Lamps
(Photos, information and history, etc)
restored center draft lamps
Care, Feeding and Restoration of Center Draft
installation for many)
Lamp manufacturers and brand names
- Dimension of
nominal base diameter by make, model and "line".
Early American Metal Font & Specialty Lamps
Aladdin Lamp History
Aladdin Lamp Wicks & Chimneys,
Aladdin - Exploded burner views
Flame Spreaders and
Vulcan, Imperial, Veritas,
Belgian, Hinks, Messenger's, Young's Court, etc.
Articles by Alex Marrack:
Site Index for all things Perfection
Kindler Wicking For Oil Stoves & Ranges
Alphabetical list of most kerosene heaters and the proper wick,
& cart checkout.
List by wick number and the heaters that fit them. (A
helpful guide for buying on eBay)
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