Employees of Israel’s antiquities authority work on a 1,700-year-old Roman-era mosaic floor in Lod, Israel, Monday, Nov. 16, 2015. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
1,700-year-old mosaic unveiled in Israel
November 19, 2015
Israel's antiquities authority has unveiled a 1,700-year-old mosaic floor. Archaeologists found it last year while building a visitors' center meant to display another mosaic, discovered two decades earlier at the same location.
The authority said the Roman-era mosaic measures 36 feet by 42 feet. It paved the courtyard of a villa in an affluent neighborhood that stood during the Roman and Byzantine eras. The scenes include hunting animals, fish, vases and birds.
"The quality of the images portrayed in the mosaic indicates a highly developed artistic ability," said Amir Gorzalczany, who directed the excavation.
The new mosaic was found just a few yards from the first one, in what is today the central Israeli city of Lod.
The authority said the mosaic discovered in the 1990s covered the villa's living room. The newly discovered one was in its courtyard.
The original mosaic has been displayed at the Metropolitan Museum in New York, the Louvre in Paris, and the Hermitage museum in St. Petersburg, Russia. It is currently on display at the Cini Gallery in Venice, Italy. It is expected to return to Lod after the visitors' center is complete.
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Why was the mosaic found in an affluent neighborhood?
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