Unearthing a Masterpiece: A Roman Mosaic from Lod, Israel

A large and exceptionally well-preserved ancient Roman floor mosaic, discovered in Lod, Israel, in 1996, and excavated in 2009, makes its final United States stop at the Penn Museum in Philadelphia before traveling to the Louvre in Paris and eventually, to a new museum being built just for it in Israel.

The exhibition opening begins on February 10, 2013, at 1:00 pm Sunday with a ribbon cutting ceremony. Joining Julian Siggers, Penn Museum Williams Director, are Yaron Sideman, Consul General of Israel to the Mid-Atlantic Region; Renato Miracco, Cultural Attaché, Italian Embassy, and Luigi Scotto, Consul General of Italy in Philadelphia. C. Brian Rose, Mediterranean Section Curator-in-Charge and content expert for the exhibition, and Kate Quinn, Exhibition Director, participate.

Dating to 300 CE, the “Lod Mosaic” is one of the most complete, well-preserved, and largest Roman mosaics ever found. It was likely commissioned by a high-standing Roman official for his private home. Alluding to gladiatorial games, the mosaic panels depict scenes of hunting, trading, and marine life; but the lack of human figures on any of the panels makes the Lod Mosaic very unusual. This exhibition presents the unique history and fascinating excavation of this impressive ancient Roman mosaic.

More details about the discovery, history, and conservation of the mosaic can be found here: http://www.lodmosaic.org/