The Antiquities Department has unveiled more images of a fascinating ancient mosaic floor recently uncovered in the Akaki area of Nicosia.
Dating back to the 4th century A.D., the mosaic depicts a chariot rate and also boasts a skilfully created geometric border as well as Ancient Greek writing in places.
According to the Antiquities Department on Tuesday, the mosaic is particularly noteworthy because it is the only one of its kind depicting chariot races to have been discovered in Cyprus, and because of its particularly high quality.
The mosaic shows the race in its entirety, encompassing its four different phases.
The names included in the epitaph appear to refer to the riders and one of the horses pulling the chariot, the Antiquities Department said.
There is great detail on the race course, including what appears to be a three copper dolphins used to depict how many times the racers had been around the course. The nine Muses can also be discerned.
According to the Antiquities Department announcement, excavations at the area began in 2013, initially revealing structures just a short way beneath the surface. Of particular interest were the remains of a 10 by 14 metre water tank which archaeologists believe would have once played an important part in village life.
No excavations were carried out in 2014 but the following year they focused on two sections of the site, south of the tank where part of the mosaic floor had been revealed in 2013, and east of the area where the remains of a structure had emerged.
The most recent excavations are focused on three areas. The first is north of the water tank where over and underground pipelines have been found and which archaeologists believe will shed light on how the water tank was filled and emptied.
The second area is west of the tank where the ground does not appear to have been covered in mosaic. Work here will continue in 2017. The third area is situated south of the tank where the remains of an arcade with a mosaic floor had been discovered in 2015.
(Photos by Katia Christodoulou, CNA)
A CNA video (in Greek) can be seen below: