Ancient Synagogue, mosaic floor. Panel 1: two lions flanking wreath
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Abstract~The Synagogue was built in the late 5th century AD. At the time when the town's Christian population was increasing and the strength of the Jewish population was diminishing. 20.7 meters long and 8 meters wide, it is the narrowest ancient Synagogue yet uncovered in the land of Israel. The mosaic floor is divided into seven parts. Near the entrance there is a scene showing the angels visiting Sarah. The next section shows the binding of Isaac. There is a large Zodiac with the names of the months written in Hebrew. Panel 1: even though the upper part of this band has been severely damaged, it is not difficult to interpret the scene that is depicted. The band shows two lions standing on a wavy ground line, each holding a bull's head in its forepaw. The lions flank a wreath which surrounds a benedictory inscription in Greek. Wreaths of this type, bound with undulating ribbons, appearing in synagogue and church reliefs and on sarcophagi. The motif of two animals flanking a central object, which originated in ancient Near Eastern art, was also a popular decorative element in ancient houses of worship.
Date5th century AD
TypeArchitecture and City Planning
Image View: http://library.artstor.org/library/secure/ViewImages?fs=true&id=8CNaaSQwKSw0NzU8dSUURXorXXkhdVR3fA%3D%3D