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Mosaic Floor Panel Depicting Marine Life

A work made of stone and mortar.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of stone and mortar.




Roman; Daphne, Turkey, the House of the Man of Letters, room 2

About this artwork

Fish was a luxury food among the Romans. Mosaics depicting marine life were especially popular in and around Antioch (near modern Antakya, Turkey), an ancient city located on the Orontes River that was known for the beauty of its waters. This mosaic, which was discovered in a house in Daphne (modern Harbiye), a prosperous garden town near Antioch, depicts several species of fish and shellfish. The representation of these sea creatures was likely intended to convey a message about the owner’s wealth as well as the variety of food available in the home.


On View, Gallery 154


Arts of the Ancient Mediterranean and Byzantium


Ancient Roman


Mosaic Floor Panel Depicting Marine Life


Antioch (Object found in)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

200 CE–230 CE


Stone and mortar


39.4 × 85.7 × 6.4 cm (15 1/2 × 33 3/4 × 2 1/2 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Mr. Henry J. Patten

Reference Number


IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

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Extended information about this artwork

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