Cultural Postcards + [Turkey]

Near East: Hadrianopolis mosaics restoration nears completion
Unique floor mosaics that have been unearthed in a church, called Church B, in Hadrianapolis’ ancient city in the Eskipazar district, will be opened to visitors.

Hadrianopolis mosaics restoration nears completion
The mosaics are considered as magnificent as those in Gaziantep’s
 ancient city of Zeugma [Credit: AA]

The mosaics are considered as magnificent as those in Gaziantep’s ancient city of Zeugma. They depict many animals, such as horses, elephants, panthers, deer and even griffons, mythical creatures. The mosaics are protected and have been undergoing restoration since their discovery.

Karabük University archaeologist Ersin Çelikbaş said that work for the mosaics’ protection had been continuing since 2010, in order to prevent their destruction. Restoration has also been focused on Church B, one of the earliest churches in Anatolia, he said, noting that its roof was covered and the mosaics were restored and cleaned. Çelikbaş said the production method of the mosaics was the same as that used in Zeugma. The area is now ready to be opened to tourism.

Çelikbaş explained there were four figures in the mosaics. “The figures depict the rivers of Euphrates, Tigris and Nile, as well as a fourth river, but we have not proven its existence yet. The figures carry the horn of plenty, which is the symbol of abundance, and fish are seen in these rivers. These are the only examples in Anatolia,” he said, citing other examples in Tunisia and Libya.

He also noted a cattle figure in the church, whose face is reflected in the water from which it drinks. “This is the only example,” he said. “Therefore the mosaics here are unique in the world. This is why we are focused on their protection.”

Source: Hurriyet Daily News [September 24, 2014]