A pebble mosaic in a bathhouse dated to the 4th century BC was discovered during an excavation at the Small Theater of Ancient Amvrakia conducted recently by the Ephorate of Antiquities in Arta.
The round mosaic consists of small white, off-white and dark river pebbles showing scenes related to water. Besides a border decoration setting it off from other spaces, it includes cupids playing with animals, swans, fish, water fowl and an octopus.
The pebble mosaic is earlier than the theater, and is related to a similar mosaic discovered in the ’70s, partly covered by the eastern part of the theater and later removed to the Archaeological Museum of Arta.
In a press release, the Arta ephorate said the dating was based on architectural evidence and on comparisons with pebble mosaics found at the Ancient Corinth baths, dated to the mid-4th century.
The supervision of the excavations is by archaeologist Nektarios-Petros Gioutsos and three conservators have already taken measures to preserve and stabilize the new find.
Arta, in western Greece, has been inhabited continuously from antiquity to the present, and the layered remains of older settlements are still visible in various parts of the present city. The Small Theater is located in the center of the modern city.
The excavation is funded by the EU’s NSRF funding plan for 2014-2020.