This ancient roman mosaic currently resides in the vatican museums in Rome, but was originally from the Toragnola Province in Rome. According to Mark Cartwright, an Italian historian writer with an MA in Political Philosophy and the Publishing Director at Ancient History Encyclopedia, this particular mosaic is on the floor and from anywhere between 350 and 375 CE, but often mosaics were on walls, vaults, fountains, and columns as well. Mosaics were extremely popular in public buildings and private homes all over the Roman empire. Because the Romans made these mosaics, scholars have been able to find out much about Roman items, like clothes, food, tools, and weapons, as well as Roman activities, like hunting, sports, and agriculture.
Food was a very popular image for mosaics during the Roman times because consuming certain types of fresh fish portrayed status, while consuming preserved fish often put people into different social groups because it was often cheap. Nonetheless, many Romans, if they could afford it, had diets based around fish because of its protein content. However, fish was an irregular commodity for the ancient romans, so preserving fish was extremely important for year-round consumption. Romans were eventually able to figure out how to take fish from the Mediterranean sea and surrounding lakes and rivers and put them into their own man-made fresh and saltwater ponds for year-round consumption, though this still limited their total supply.
The mosaics that the Romans created would eventually go on to be main influencers in the interior decorators of Christian churches from as early as the 4th century.
About the Author: Mason Beck is a Junior Marketing and Supply Chain double major. He is from Bay, village Ohio, and holds 5 school records at John Carroll and 3 UAA conference records.