Art and Society in Fourth-century Britain: Villa Mosaics in Context
This volume builds upon the copious and varied research on villa mosaics in Roman Britain, and evaluates it within the context of elite social life in the 4th century AD. It argues that the mosaics were an integral part of the rich lifestyles of elites in this period and played an important role in defining their status. Yet these symbols of power were apparantely no longer valued to the same degree by the end of the 4th century. In a period of increasing social and economic instability, the mosaics were one element in an elite lifestyle which was ultimately to prove socially divisive. In this wide-ranging study, Sarah Scott considers the significance and long-term impact of the artistic choices made by villa owners.
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List of Illustrations
Chronology Style and Industry
Villas in FourthCentury Britain
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apse archaeological Bacchus Barton Farm bath Bellerophon Bignor Brading busts central central-southern centre Chapter Chedworth Cirencester complex Cookson corridor Cosh Cotswolds Cotterstock courtyard decorated Dewlish Durnovaria Durnovarian east Midlands elites Empire evidence for Christianity example excavated Fifehead Neville Figure fourth century fourth-century Britain fourth-century villa geometric Goodburn group of mosaicists guilloche Halstock Hanfmann Henig Hinton St Mary Horkstow identified Ilchester important impressive interlaced squares interpretation Jesnick Keynsham larger villas Lindinis Ling Littlecote Lysons Mansfield Woodhouse Mary and Frampton mosaic floors motifs mythological Neal Newton St Loe North Leigh Northants Orpheus designs Orpheus mosaic pagan panel particular patterns pavements perhaps period Pitney possessed probably provincial art reception rooms region religious Roman Britain Romano-British Romano-British mosaics Romano-British villa Rudston saltire saltire designs scenes Seasons seems significance similar Smith social south-west Stonesfield stylistic subjects suggests symbols tesserae Thruxton Toynbee villa mosaics villa owners Whilst Winterton Withington Woodchester workshop