Mosaic museum in Maʿarrat al nūʿmān – University of Copenhagen

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Idlib - Northern Syria


Mosaic museum in Maʿarrat al nūʿmān

Historical & archaeological value

The city of Maʿarrat al nūʿmān is located on the highway linking Aleppo and Hama, near the sites of Serǧīllā and Albara church. The city’s Mosaic Museum contains rare mosaics found during archaeological excavation at the sites of Apamea and ancient villages in the Limestone Massif. The museum building was originally built as a caravanserai in the late 17th century when Maʿarrat al nūʿmān was under Ottoman rule and it became a museum in 1987. The mosaics stored depict various themes including hunting, banqueting and religious scenes as well as other aspects of daily life in Classical Syria. The museum has one of the largest collections of Byzantine period mosaics in the world and also exhibits pottery and glass objects dating from the Bronze Age to the Islamic period. The city of Maʿarrat al nūʿmān has also been associated in the collective memory with the poet and philosopher Abu alʿalā al Maʿārī who lived during the Abbasid period (973-1057 AD).