1500 year Georgian church mosaic discovered in Israel
“Stunning 1500 year Georgian Church Moisaic Discovered in Israeli Port City” the Jerusalem Post article by Daniel K. Eisenbud reads. “The well-preserved remains of a 1,500 year old colored mosaic floor from a Georgian church or monastery was unearthed during an excavation in the coastal city of Ashdod, the Antiquities Authority announced this week”.
It appears the mosiac was found in August, under the direction of Dr. Alexander Fantalkin of Tel Aviv University’s Archeology and Ancient Near Eastern Civilizations Department, and Prof. Angelika Berlejung of Leipzig University.
The discovered mosaic includes “a fourline Greek commemorative inscription dedicated to the structure’s builder, Bishop Procopius, as well as the year of its construction, based on the Georgian calendar, saying: “[By the grace of God (or Jesus)], this work was done from the foundation under Procopius, our most saintly and most holy bishop, in the month Dios of the 3rd indiction, year 292”.
As the article states, according to Dr. Leah Di Segni, of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the date following the Georgian calendar goes back to 539 CE, making it the earliest appearance of the use of the Georgian calendar in Israel.
“This was many years before it was used in Georgia itself,” Segni, who deciphered the inscription, is quoted as saying, Georgia Today reports.