- Copyright Page
- List of Contributors
- The Archaeology of Early Christianity: The History, Methods, and State of a Field
- Archaeology of the Gospels
- New Testament Archaeology Beyond the Gospels
- The Catacombs
- Burials and Human Remains of the Eastern Mediterranean in Early Christian Context
- The Archaeology of Early Monastic Communities
- Baptisteries in Ancient Sites and Rites
- Baths, Christianity, and Bathing Culture in Late Antiquity
- The Art of the Catacombs
- Visual Rhetoric of Early Christian Reliquaries
- An <i>Anarchéologie</i> of Icons
- Spolia and the “Victory of Christianity”
- Early Christian Mosaics in Context
- Amulets and the Ritual Efficacy of Christian Symbols
- Christian Archaeology in Palestine: The Roman and Byzantine Periods
- The Church of the East Until the Eighth Century
- The Holy Island: An Archaeology of Early Christian Cyprus
- Asia Minor
- Community, Church, and Conversion in the Prefecture of Illyricum and the Cyclades
- The Early Christian Archaeology of the Balkans
- The Archaeology of Early Italian Churches in Context, 313–569 CE
- The Christianization of Gaul: Buildings and Territories
- Britain and Ireland, 100–700 CE
- Christian Landscapes in the Iberian Peninsula: The Archaeological Evidence (Fourth–Sixth Centuries)
- Incorporating Christian Communities in North Africa: Churches as Bodies of Communal History
- Archaeology of Early Christianity in Egypt
Abstract and Keywords
This chapter provides an introduction to early Christian mosaics that emphasizes the important role played by archaeology in improving our understanding of their geographical and architectural contexts. After a short discussion of the position of early Christian mosaics in the history of the medium, a brief review of the most productive methodologies used in research on mosaics is undertaken, followed by a survey of mosaic technology that includes the workshops and artists involved in mosaic production. In the rest of the chapter, a selection of mosaics in churches, martyria, chapels, and Christian mausolea located in various parts of the Mediterranean world is examined. The evidence from archaeology demonstrates that although early Christian mosaics share universal themes, the diversity reflected in their iconography and the presence of secondary themes rooted in local traditions necessitate a regional approach to their interpretation.
Karen C. Britt, College of Fine & Performing Arts Dean’s Distinguished Scholar in Visual Culture, School of Art and Design, Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, North Carolina, USA.
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