Saturday, February 23, 2013



A mosaic featuring an Eros figure fishing on horse sea serpent has been hailed by experts in Turkey as the first-ever mosaic portrayal of the fabled hippocampus of myth and lore.

The unique find was made in the southern province of Adana’s Yumurtalık district and shows Eros astride a creature whose front half is that of a horse (Greek "hippo") and whose rear half is that of a monster (Greek "kampos").

It is claimed to be the one and only such mosaic in the world.

Made up of marble, glass and stone, the mosaic is estimated to date back to the late Roman or early Byzantine era.

The Adana Museum Directorate has initiated archaeological excavations in the region where the mosaic was discovered. One week ago the existence of a villa was determined in the area. The villa was thought to be owned by a top state official and the Eros mosaic was revealed when a part of the villa was excavated.

Yumurtalık Deputy Mayor Erdol Erden said the Eros mosaic was found during a one-week excavation.

"We found young and adult Eros figures in the villa. Experts say that these figures were the first and only such figures in the world," Erden said.

The hippocampus comes from both Phoenician and Greek mythology, and is said to have served the God of seas, earthquakes and horses – none other than Poseidon.

They would draw his chariot, or he was often seen riding one

It is believed that sailors sometimes drowned horses as a sacrifice to Poseidon to ensure a safe voyage.

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