detail of the Stag Hunt mosaic at Pella

Greek Mosaics of the Classical & Hellenistic Periods

Ruth Westgate

detail of the Stag Hunt mosaic at Pella

Mosaics in the ancient world were mostly made for private houses, and, as we all instinctively know, you can tell a great deal about someone from their house. Studying mosaics and the other decoration of ancient houses provides fascinating insights into the activities, values, economic standing and social aspirations of people living in the past. On this site are summaries of several papers in which I attempt to see the occupants of ancient houses as their contemporaries might have seen them. These articles are based on a complete corpus of Classical and Hellenistic mosaics, from the introduction of pebble mosaics c. 400 BC, down to the final sack of Delos in 69 BC. It aims to include all the decorated mosaics of pebbles, tesserae, stone chips and mixed materials known from this period. To read the abstracts, click here (page size 258K including images).

Also on this site is a basic bibliography for Greek and Roman mosaics, covering the period c. 400 BC to AD 400, and some links to other mosaic-related websites. Move the mouse over the pictures to see the captions.

Olynthos, pebble mosaic in the dining room of House A.vi.3: Bellerophon and the Chimaira (photo by Janett Morgan) comic actor: detail of a mosaic from Pompeii, signed by a Greek mosaicist, Dioskourides from Samos Delos, mosaic in House III N of the Theatre Quarter, late 2nd/early 1st century B.C.

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This page is maintained by Ruth Westgate. Images © Ruth Westgate, Janett Morgan.