Mosaics of Dionysus, Ariadne from ancient city of Metropolis restored

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Thanks to the diligent work of restorers, mosaics depicting Eros, the Greek god of love, Dionysus, the Greek god of fertility, theater and merriment, and his wife Ariadne have been restored to their former glory in the ancient city of Metropolis in the Torbali district of the western Izmir province.

Mosaics of Dionysus, Ariadne from ancient city of Metropolis restored
Mosaic of Dionysus and his wife Ariadne in the ancient city of Metropolis,
Izmir, western Turkey [Credit: AA]



While excavations are sustained throughout the whole year in Metropolis by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and Manisa Celal Bayar University to unveil the secrets of the city, the restoration of the spellbinding mosaics was completed with the use of modern techniques. The state-of-art techniques have provided the mosaics with a fresher look and also ensured the preservation of their stones and colors.

Mosaics of Dionysus, Ariadne from ancient city of Metropolis restored
A restorer works on a mosaic in the ancient city of Metropolis,
Izmir, western Turkey [Credit: AA]

The mosaics that have been restored also feature depictions of masks, the symbols of theater, and fish and bird figures that describe the fertility of the region along with Eros, Dionysus and Ariadne.

Mosaics of Dionysus, Ariadne from ancient city of Metropolis restored
A restorer works on a mosaic in the ancient city of Metropolis,
Izmir, western Turkey [Credit: AA]



The head of the excavation in Metropolis, Prof. Serdar Aybek told Anadolu Agency (AA) that Metropolis, which has fertile lands, unites Central Anatolia and the Aegean, and therefore has hosted many civilizations in the past. Noting that Metropolis stands out because of its mosaics, Aybek said: “We found the mosaics in the area (that) we believe to be a guesthouse and sustained their restoration here as well.”

Mosaics of Dionysus, Ariadne from ancient city of Metropolis restored
A restorer works on a mosaic in the ancient city of Metropolis,
Izmir, western Turkey [Credit: AA]

Stating that the guesthouse where the mosaics are located is connected with the theater, Aybek added, “We think that the guests who came to the Metropolis for the theater were hosted here. Therefore, Dionysus, who is known as the god of theater and entertainment, his wife Ariadne and Eros were often used in the mosaics on the floor of this house. We see great delicacy in the mosaics. In these mosaics, which are almost like a painting, shadow, toning and even facial expressions are conveyed very successfully and strongly.”

Mosaics of Dionysus, Ariadne from ancient city of Metropolis restored
A restorer works on a mosaic in the ancient city of Metropolis,
Izmir, western Turkey [Credit: AA]

According to the excavation head, love is emphasized in the mosaics. “Dionysus and Ariadne are looking at each other in the mosaics. There is Eros between them. This is actually a message of love transmitted from about 1,800 years ago.”

Source: Anadolu Agency [October 13, 2021]

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