How a blueprint from an ancient Greek sculpture transformed a home
Posted On July 2, 2021
The tiles used to decorate the walls of a medieval palace in Greece have been the subject of controversy since they were discovered in 1871.
In a recent exhibition at the National Museum of Greece, researchers excavated the tiles from a house in the city of Acropolis and were astonished to discover they were made from a ceramic tile.
The tiles are made of copper and were probably used as a heating and cooling device, said archaeologist Elena G. Palaev, the lead researcher of the exhibition.
The researchers say the tiles are unique in that they are ceramic, but the question is, why was they painted with bronze?
“The reason why these tiles were painted with this bronze was probably because it is the first time that copper has been used to make a copper mask, which is something that has not been done in other places,” she told Al Jazeera.
The study also reveals that the tiles were likely used in a ritual.
“The people who built these tiles probably had an elaborate ceremony,” said Palaef, adding that it would be interesting to understand why they painted them with bronze.
Ivan Petrovich, an expert in Greek and Roman culture, said the work is fascinating.
“It’s a very significant find because we don’t know if the people in the house were members of the community or not.
They may have been slaves,” he told Alja.
“We know that the temple at Acropolis was built around AD 40, and the ancient Greeks also built many other temples.”
The house is located in the Acropolis district of the capital, Athens.
Archaeologists have been searching for more information about the house for years, but until now the most recent discovery was the work of an archaeologist working in the late 19th century.
However, in 2017, researchers uncovered another ancient Greek home that was built by the same family, which revealed a new story of the ancient city of Athens.
In fact, the Acristas house is one of only three such structures found in Athens, along with a more famous example, the Palazzo d’Oro in Pompeii.
According to the researchers, the house is about 40 metres tall and has four rooms, each measuring about one metre wide.
“They built a very beautiful house,” Palaeva said.
“This is one example of how people built houses and how the building process was really important.”
The team also found another ceramic tile at the Acrosia House, which also had a unique pattern and was likely painted by the family who lived there.
The new finding was published in the journal Scientific Reports.