Friday, February 19, 2016

Review of Madden, Corpus of Byzantine Church Mosaic Pavements

Andrew M. Madden, Corpus of Byzantine Church Mosaic Pavements from Israel and the Palestinian Territories. Colloquia antiqua, 13. Leuven; Paris; Walpole, MA: Peeters, 2014. Pp. xvi, 242. ISBN 9789042930612. €78.00.

Reviewed by Laurel Taylor, University of North Carolina Asheville (

Table of Contents

In a new monograph based upon his doctoral thesis, Andrew Madden provides a comprehensive catalogue of chapel, church and monastery mosaic pavements from Roman Palestine during the early Christian period. The chronological parameters of his study begin with the spread of Christianity and the attendant church building in the region during the fourth century and end in the eighth century when, based on current archaeological evidence, construction of mosaic pavements appears to cease in Christian edifices. Though there have been more publications devoted to the mosaics of this region over the past few decades, none have focused exclusively on pavements from Christian contexts. From a large yet diffuse body of publications (monographs, catalogues and a staggering number of excavation reports), Madden has compiled a comprehensive catalogue of nearly 300 mosaic pavements found within Roman Palestine. His contribution is, therefore, a welcome addition and of great utility for those seeking comparanda for Christian mosaics in the larger Mediterranean.