Thursday, January 04, 2018

Nilometers in late-antique mosaics in Israel

DECORATIVE ART AND ANCIENT TECHNOLOGY: Nilometers in the Land of Israel (Ticia Verveer, Times of Israel [Blog]). Excerpt:
In that [late Roman and Byzantine] period Israel yielded an astonishing wealth of magnificent mosaic floors. In Galilean Sepphoris, archaeologists unearthed a mosaic with the depiction of a nilometer in a Byzantine public structure. As the name suggests, the device originates from the area of the Nile in Egypt. The nilometer was invented for recording the annual inundations in Egypt and to control the floodwater. Since the invention of writing, the ancient Egyptians began to attempt to record observations of their world. Egyptian administrators were appointed to make accurate measures of the inundation levels. These records became vital for survival.The column nilometer type appeared during the later Imperial period, and can be depicted as an individual item or shown with human figures engraving the newly risen flood level
Follow the link for more mosaic nilometers and photos.

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