Looking Beyond the Obvious: Rereading the Message of the Mosaics

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When we look at the mosaic pavements that have come down to us over the centuries, it is easy to see that many of the patterns chosen were part of a decorative grammar that reflected a world view adapted to the geographical area, the social class and the time when the mosaic was built. The dawn of Christianity in the Roman Empire was no exception: traditional patterns were “adopted” by the new religion, in a discourse adapted to the moment in time and to the local social and political evolution. An adoption which at a certain moment allowed a veiled identification as a follower of the new religion. In the present intervention, the author proposes to present an analysis of the evolution of some of these patterns in the light of the Christianisation in the westernmost part of Lusitania.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-144
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Mosaic Research
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - 3 Nov 2023


  • Late Antiquity
  • Mosaics
  • Plurisignificant signs
  • Roman and Early Christian Art
  • Semiotic


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