Monday, March 28, 2005

Wot no Roman mosaic?

Yes it is a mosaic (see below). But no it's not Roman, and no it isn't mine (wish it was). However, I wanted to find out how to put pics into the blog, and it was the only decent digital image of a mosaic that I could find in my collection. Haven't had the digital camera long!

This example is from Byland Abbey, North Yorkshire (where there are a lot of medieval abbeys, priories, etc.). These particular mosaic floors date to the 13th century, and some were also found at Fountains Abbey.

Each tile has been moulded to a particular shape, then glazed and fired. This unlike the tiles in Roman mosaics, where they're moulded, fired and used as roof tile, in hypocausts, etc., and then effectively reused when the building was abandoned or changed use for some reason and the tiles were salvaged. However, I don't doubt that Roman mosaicists hung around tile yards asking for any wasters (the over-fired ones would have come out blue or grey, giving them another colour to play with) or broken tiles.


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