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Mosaics of Roman Africa: Floor Mosaics from Tunisia Hardcover – December 1, 1996


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 296 pages
  • Publisher: George Braziller; 1 edition (December 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807614114
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807614112
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.6 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,100,440 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Imagine entering a triclinium (or banquet hall) in Roman Africa and finding that beneath your feet is one of the world's most stunning mosaic masterpieces. Flourishing in Mediterranean Africa between the second and sixth centuries A.D., this art created from shards of marble or limestone stands as one of the more durable artistic media. While the text offers conjectural interpretations meticulously bolstered by lively historical evidence that illuminates the everyday life of Roman Africa, the real focus of this book is the magnificent collection of more than 200 color illustrations divided into chapters headed by the subject matter of various mosaics ("Spectacles"; "Eternal Time and Cyclical Time"). Despite the growing power of Christianity (this was, after all, the native land of St. Augustine), the decorative program is decidedly pagan. Not only are the deities pagan, whether Roman or local in provenance, but the other subjects have ancient Greco-Roman roots as well. One example is the asarotos oikos theme, in which elements of a meal are spread out over the floor, most spectacularly in an almost trompe l'oeil scattering of kitchen scraps from the House of Salonin at Oudna. Other mosaics chronicle the lives of the rich nobles who commissioned them (and as such depict many current hot-button issues of race and colonialism, albeit highly allegorically), and are room-size works in which the microcosmic patrician estates are shown to reflect complex ethnic and social hierarchies. Clearly a celebration of life (and wealth), the mosaics continue to provide a feast of wonder.

Copyright 1996 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

Language Notes

Text: English
Original Language: French

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By domster on March 26, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is a must have for the serious mosaicist whom delights in the tradition and non traditional practice. Highlighting the beauty of mosaic traditions developing between the 2nd and 6th Centuries, the authors have done a magnificent job show casing the incredible works that were fabricated as floors by the master craftsmen of this era. The book is full of plates that comprise close up and entire mosaics in fantastic quality. I see something new every time I open it up.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Excellent coffee table book! Worth the price! By all means the best picture album on the subject! Lots of good quality illustrations. My favorite mosaic book!
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3 of 8 people found the following review helpful By W. Buckingham on August 3, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Don't bother ordering this book. I ordered it 8 months ago from Amazon and it still hasn't arrived
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