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Genie's lamp (alternatively referred to as the Magic Lamp or Aladdin's lamp) is a magical oil lamp featured in Aladdin, whose owner has the ability to summon and temporarily control a wish-granting Genie with cosmic power. As it contains an all-powerful servant, the lamp has been coveted by many for thousands of years.
The lamp has existed for millennia, though it's origins are unknown. As one of the most powerful objects in the universe, the lamp was hidden deep within the Cave of Wonders, a cavern that can only be summoned by a golden scarab and entered by an individual known as the Diamond of the Rough.
The lamp itself resembles an oil lamp, which have been used as "genie lamps" in Arabian folklore for generations. It is completely gold in color. The interior was described by Genie as very cramped and small. Despite this, the interior has been fully seen as part of of the Inside the Genie's Lamp featurette, in which the lamp boasts a large living room, dining room, a master bedroom with a "fly in" closet, and even a garden decorated with topiaries, flora, and water features. Additional areas that are mentioned (but unseen) include a ballroom and a breakfast nook.
The lamp was hidden away in the mysterious Cave of Wonders for centuries. For years the lamp has been constantly wanted by the evil vizier, Jafar, until Aladdin got a hold of it and was granted three wishes. After Aladdin used his first two wishes, Jafar's pet parrot sidekick Iago was able to steal the lamp and give it to Jafar, who uses the first two wishes to become a sultan and sorcerer respectively. After returning to Agrabah, Aladdin tries to steal back the lamp, but Jafar discovered him and kept him from doing so. After Jafar was tricked into using his third wish to become a genie himself, Aladdin reclaimed the lamp. He used his third wish to set the Genie free, and the lamp was used as a home/residence for Genie instead of a prison.
Although still Genie's 'default' location to reside in (although he was able to leave the lamp on his own accord rather than being perpetually trapped in it until rubbed like he was originally), Genie tended to spend more time outside of his lamp than within it, the lamp serving as a place to rest more than anything else. On at least three occasions the lamp was stolen: once by Abis Mal who sought to make the Genie grant him his wishes (unaware that Genie was no longer obligated to grant wishes after his freedom), another time by Mozenrath whilst he was asleep inside it to lure Aladdin to him, and again by a 'charitable' Iago who attempted to sell it, prompting Genie to attempt to get it back as he missed his home.
The lamp can be seen in occasion by Genie's side although most of the time, Genie is around and about without it. In the episode, "Donald's Lamp Trade," it was seen in the club's storage room inside a crate labeled "Aladdin's Lamp." Apparently, Donald made a deal with Jafar to get him the lamp in exchange for getting back at Mickey for calling him a ham. However, it was later proven to be the wrong lamp when Jafar revealed that he actually wanted the one in Mickey's dressing room.
The lamp was also used to capture Jafar when Mickey was fighting him for the ownership of the club on Halloween in the movie, Mickey's House of Villains. Aladdin tossed it to him from behind a door with Goofy claiming that the lamp will hold Jafar for eternity.
When Netizen version of Jasmine, and the other Disney Princesses of Oh My Disney, discovered Vanellope von Schweetz in the princess room, during their downtime, she got the lamp out to use as a weapon. Just as the princesses were about to use their "weapons" on the intruder, Vanellope reassured them that she isn't a threat and is a princess herself.
The lamp is also seen as one of the auction items at eBay.
There are several Genie's lamps that appear on ABC's Once Upon a Time. The first is seen in "Fruit of the Poisonous Tree". There is a magical lamp that was once home to the Genie of Agrabah. The lamp is found on the beach by King Leopold, husband of the Evil Queen. He rubs the lamp, trying to clean it, and the Genie appears in his service. Having no desires for himself, Leopold uses his first wish to free the Genie, and his second wish to give the Genie the third wish, handing the lamp over to him as representation. The final wish is used by Genie to become the Magic Mirror, in an attempt to remain with the Queen forever; afterwards the lamp loses all traces of its magic. When the Dark Curse is cast, it is taken into Storybrooke and ends up in Mr. Gold's pawn shop.
In the live-action remake of Aladdin, the lamp served the same basic role: containing an all-powerful Genie and hidden within the Cave of Wonders until Aladdin is sent by Jafar to retrieve it, only to be betrayed and trapped within the cave, but Abu was able to steal it back. However, the lamp has one additional rule to use it: the user must rub the lamp before making a wish.
Later on in the movie, the lamp was stolen by Jafar himself who uses his first two wishes, but then is stolen again by Jasmine, who escapes with Aladdin on the Magic Carpet, only for the former vizier to reclaim it again and then use it to become a genie himself after being tricked by Aladdin. Afterwards, Aladdin reclaims the lamp and uses his final wish to set the Genie free.
In the sequel, it is revealed that if a Genie's lamp is destroyed, the Genie itself dies. However, it is unknown if the destruction of the lamp will have an affect on the Genie himself since he is free, and his imprisonment in the lamp has been lifted. Likely, since the Genie had lost some power after being free, (which could've been a result of the excessive amount of power which was used to life the imprisonment) it is likely that his freedom has lifted the connection between him and the lamp, which was powerful enough to destroy him. So had Aladdin not freed the Genie, the Genie would've died had the lamp had been destroyed.