Secrets Of Cyprus: A Chariot Race Mosaic Uncovered

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(all photos by Stavros Ioannides via Cyprus’ Press and Information Office)

Quite an exciting Archaeology find has been found by the Archaeologists with Cyprus’s Department of Antiquities in the beautiful Island of Cyprus: A huge, rare mosaic depicting a chariot race that dates back to the fourth century CE. The 36-foot-long, 13-feet-wide work consists of four horse drawn chariots with drivers in a stadium, created out of colorful stone.

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“The mosaic is not just the only one of its kind in Cyprus but also stands as just one of a few in the world that depict such a scene”, Said Fryni Hadjichristof,  who led the excavations. Interestingly, there are only seven other mosaic floors depicting horses pulling chariots. This particular one is one of the most well preserved of its kind and has detailed scenes from the racetracks, with each horse and drive representing different periods of the race.

Υπ. Μεταφορών – Παρουσίαση αρχαιολογικού χώρου  // Min. Transport – Presentation of archaeological site

Hadjichristofi’s excavation team just  revealed this amazing discovery last month, but first came across it last year during ongoing excavations. “We noticed that there was something under the road,” Hadjichristofi told CNN. “But we really didn’t suspect there was anything this important underneath.” She and her team think that the floor was once part of a villa, likely owned by a person of wealth during the island’s days of Roman rule.

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According to Cyprus Mail, the mosaic also includes the names of one of the racers and horses and another a man on horseback and two bystanders, with one cradling a water vessel and the other wielding a whip.

There will be on going excavations at the site, and one day the area may be opened for the public to see. I know I would love to go there and see it! What about you?

 

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