Splendid mosaics recovered in a Byzantine monastery in Negev (Israel)

Splendid mosaics recovered in a Byzantine monastery in Negev (Israel)


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At the entrance to the Bedouin village of Hura, north of the Negev (a desert region in the southern half of Israel), a Byzantine period monastery measuring 20 x 35 meters, divided into different rooms around an axis from east to west, with spectacular mosaics on the floor of some of the rooms.

The most impressive are the prayer room and the dining room, as their floors are covered with a rich decoration of polychrome mosaics. Those of the first follow a vegetal design of vibrant colors, and those of the dining room also have floral motifs, geometric figures, amphoras, two birds inscribed in a square on a background of rhombuses.

In addition, they also have Greek inscriptions of abbots' names who directed the convent, Elihayu, Nonus, Solomon and Ilirion, and the dates in which it was built, which have allowed the monastery to be dated to second half of the 6th century of our era. There are also some bilingual inscriptions and others written in the Syriac language, an ancient language derived from Aramaic typical of some Semitic peoples.

Just as important are ceramic objects and utensils that have been rescued: different types of amphorae and jars, craters, pots and bowls, as well as a great variety of glass vessels and Byzantine coins.

The Israel Antiquities Authority in collaboration with local Hura agencies is proposing the integration of the monastery and its mosaics into the Waddi Attir project, an initiative of an economic and cultural nature on the Bedouin peoples of the Israel desert.

Romantic, in the artistic sense of the word. In my adolescence both family and friends reminded me over and over that I was an inveterate humanist, as I spent time doing what perhaps others not so much, believing myself to be Bécquer, immersed in my own artistic fantasies, in books and movies, constantly wanting to travel and explore the world, admired for my historical past and for the wonderful productions of the human being. That is why I decided to study History and combine it with Art History, because it seemed to me the most appropriate way to carry out the skills and passions that characterize me: reading, writing, traveling, researching, knowing, making known, educating. Disclosure is another of my motivations, because I understand that there is no word that has real value if it is not because it has been transmitted effectively. And with this, I am determined that everything I do in my life has an educational purpose.


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