Long time no mosaic

Winter scroll mosaic

After a long time away from the tessera and tools I’ve managed to get back in touch with my materials and produce a new set of coasters. Produced in my usual way (10 x 10 cm and felt backed) these … Continue reading

The New Inscription from Cirencester: A Few Thoughts

Originally posted on The Petrified Muse:

A couple of days ago, the discovery and excavation of a Roman tombstone at Cirencester (Gloucestershire) – largely undamaged and still in its original setting (in situ, as the professionals say) – has been publicised in no unspectacular terms.

The BBC, for example, suggested that this was a ‘unique’ Roman tombstone. The Discovery News praised the ‘rare intact’ Roman tombstone.

Did I say rare? I meant ‘super-rare‘ of course: thank you, Huffington Post, for keeping it real.

At any rate, the Gloucestershire Echo is confident: the tombstone makes ‘archaeological history‘. And of course, wherever something has been found, the ubiquitous, inevitable, and pointless claim that this site is ‘a Pompeii’ must be made (however silly or inappropriate) – like here on the webpages of Culture 24.

Time to step back a bit and to look at the object in question –…

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Tricks of the trade: Coins of Gordian III from the Antioch Mint

Rome mint coin of Gordian III,  image taken from www.dirtyoldcoins.com

One of the more awkward challenges of cataloguing a 3rd century coin hoard can be picking out which coins were minted at Antioch.  This is especially true for Gordian III (AD 238-244) Fortunately, in my job I have the luxury … Continue reading

Idle thoughts on Commemorative Coins

An example of Decius' commemorative coins series, Featuring the deified Antoninus Pius.

Photograph taken from the portable antiquities website. http://finds.org.uk/database/artefacts/record/id/434379

I’ve been cataloguing mid third century coins rather extensively at work recently, and whilst I was working my way through a selection of Trajan Decius’ coins I came across his ‘Consecratio’ series. During the reign of Trajan Decius a commemorative … Continue reading

A Classical Mosaic Tray

DSCN1919

Recently I’ve relocated for a new exciting job and in the process have had to leave the mosaics behind for a while, therefore this most recent effort will be the last for a small time. Previously I made a mosaic … Continue reading

Guilloche Mosaic coasters

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Mass production of coasters continues in my mini mosaic workshop therefore I present to you another coaster creation.  These coasters have been made with one of my favourite designs, and possibly one of the most recognisably Roman designs, a guillouche … Continue reading

More Mosaics!

DSCN1912

Over the last few weeks I’ve been making more mosaic coasters, however unlike my previous equestrian themed pieces, these have more of a classical flavour. These coasters have been designed with Romano-British mosaics in mind, in particular the influence of … Continue reading

The History of Mosaics: Materials for Construction

Example from Brussels

Throughout history mosaics have been made from a variety of different materials, depending on the location of the project, complexity of the floor and importantly, the wealth of the patron. Limestone and marbles were typically the main stones used in … Continue reading

The History of Mosaics

A Roman mosaic in all its beauty

Mosaics have long been seen as the staple of Roman art, culture, and achievement and have been found in Roman buildings across the empire ranging from Britain to Africa and Spain to Judaea. Their occurrence in the ancient world is … Continue reading

My Denarius of Hadrian

Hadrian 134-138 AD

Recently, I must admit, my posts have become somewhat infrequent and sporadic:  sometimes life simply gets in the way of writing.  Nevertheless life includes collecting and I would like to share one of my best recent acquisitions,  a denarius of … Continue reading