The light from Lamp is more impressive than the Sun and the Moon-light (Skanda Purana). It is a sacred symbol of Sun and Fire. The lamp is considered to be a precious gift given to human beings by the Sun. The lamp is also the main part of worship representing prayer and knowledge.In ancient India the lamp was made of stone and conch-shell. Then came the terracotta lamps. Later when the culture developed, the metal lamps were used for lighting.
The Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum has about 500 lamps in various sizes and shapes. They are made of different metals, stone, glass, terracotta and wood belonging to the 17th to 19th Century A.D. and hailing from Rajasthan, Gujarat, South India, Madhya Pradesh, Nepal and Maharashtra. The tribal hanging lamps are mention worthy.
- Standing Lamps- The Samai, the standing Nepali Lamps and the tree-shaped lamps are included in this category. The huge tall standing lamp from Trichur (Kerala-17th century A.D.) is marvellous. The Guru-Shishya Deep, the Poison Testing Lamp, Samai with Parrot, Kadamb Vriksha deep, tree-lamp with scenes from Ramayana and the rotating Garba-lamp from Gujarat are very attractive.
- Short and Small Lamps/Aarti Lamps - Halkarati, Pancharati, Karpurarati are included in this category. The Ganesh Deep, Mooshak Aarti, Bird motif Lamps, memory lamps are noteworthy. Days, months, stars, zodiac signs are interwoven in the Sun Lamp from Nepal, which is of 17th Century A. D. The rolling lamp is significant because of the balance of wick, it maintains in spite of being rolled.
- Hanging Lamps - These lamps hanging with a chain show the motifs of Birds and animals. A hook is used for the purpose of hanging. The siphon technique is also used in these lamps.
- Lamps with perfume stick holders - The lamps show a combination of perfume stick holders and spaces to put the wicks. The stands are made either of brass or iron or marble or wood.
- Wick-Trimmers – It will not be out of place if we make a mention of our collection of wick-cutters which are used for trimming the black suit of the wicks.
There are three categories in Wick-Trimmers. (a) Scissors shaped Wick – Trimmers are used for cutting the cotton Wick, (b) A Trimmer with box is used for collecting the lamp-black and (c) The Trimmer with a bird motif are used for adjusting the Wicks by removing the black as well for the movement of the Wick.