Ancient Greek mosaics were initially made with rounded pebbles, and then with
tesserae which gave more colour and a flat surface. They were popular in the Hellenistic period, at first as decoration for the floors of palaces, but eventually for private homes.
The Stag Hunt Mosaic, late 4th c. BC, from Pella. The figure on the right is Alexander the Great and the figure on the left wielding a double-edged axe is Hephaestion, one of Alexander’s loyal companions.
1. Alexander the Great, wearing a kausia and fighting an Asiatic lion with his friend Craterus, late 4th c. BC mosaic from Pella. 2. Unswept Floor, Roman copy of the mosaic by Sosus of Pergamon. 3. Ptolemaic mosaic of a dog and askos wine vessel from Alexandria, c. 200-150 BC. 4. Ptolemaic Queen Berenice II as the personification of Alexandria, signed by Sophilos, c. 200 BC. Hellenistic mosaic from Thmuis. 5. Detail of mosaic with Alexandrine parakeet, mid-2nd c. BC, from Pergamon. 6. The Abduction of Persephone by Hades, 4th c. BC. A mosaic of the Kasta Tomb, Amphipolis.
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