Roman Tunisia

The pride and joy of the Bardo Museum. This mosaic is from Homer’s Odyssey as Ulysses’ ship approached the Island of the Sirens. The mosaic was found in Dougga and dates to around 260AD. If you enjoy mosaics, this museum is something to see.

A variety of mosaics to fit every surface.

Just a small piece of a massive floor mosaic that must have been around 15′ by 30′ or more. Instead of carpets, the wealthy Romans would decorate their floors with mosaics.

A thin strip of a beautiful mosaic at the Bardo Museum in Tunis. People say it holds the best collection of Roman-era mosaics in the world. Most of the collection is from El Jem, Dougga or Carthage, Tunisia.

The El Jem Roman theater held up to 35,000 spectators and is in remarkably good condition. In the middle of the arena floor you can see where they opened up the floor to allow light down below.

A thick stone ’tile’ of sorts that is at ground level, allowing light down into the storage cave below.

Same ’tile’ as above, but from underground.

Walking below ground level at the El Jem Roman amphitheater built in the 3rd century AD. This is where the animals would have been kept until being moved above ground for the Roman events. They opened up the ground floor (overhead) to allow in extra light for visitors.

An American in Paris, France. BA in History & Political Science from Ohio State. Provided consulting services to US software startups, launching new business overseas that have both IPO’d and sold to well-known global software companies. Currently launching a new cloud-based startup. Full bio here.

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  • TheOriginalLiz

    Wonderful. Thanks.

  • apikoros

    On the first mosaic, two important thing you may not see at first…

    there are eight pair of oars on that ship… but no oarsmen depicted. Slaves never exist in artistic representation unless to elevate the master.

    The steering board (starboard) is on the port (left) side of the ship! I think this is licenze, as I think that even the Romans adhered to the port/left – starboard/right model. At the same time, Romans notoriously hatewd the sea, so the artist may not have known.

  • Indigo


  • Guest

    Chris’ vacation posts rule

  • I don’t think the whole Bush stupidly saying he gave up golf for the troops, and then was caught playing golf got enough play. This from the man who wants to cut back on VA services for disabled veterans.

    By the way, the Bu$h twins said they were going to give up drinking anything that didn’t have alcohol in it “for the troops” of course.

    Barbara “Babs” Bush said she was going to give up dieting “for the troops.”

  • Bubbles

    Really nice pictures.

    I want your life. An American living in Paris. French wife. And weekend jaunts to places like this. I am totally jealous.

  • Dumbo

    All I have to say is, wow, what a tiny little boat. I wouldn’ta stood up if I was Ulysses. Some flying-fish might have come along and hit him in the face and knocked him in the water.

    History would have been so different if that had happened. Deep, I know.

  • sittenpretty

    just fab,pick me up at the airport,ill be there in 9 hrs

  • unrepentant_expat

    Being torn to shreds by ferocious carnivores sure sucks but I’ve really got to hand it to the architect. Finest coliseum I’ve ever seen.

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