Archaeologists discovered an ancient mosaic dating back to the 4th century AD in Barhilia located in Barada valley in al-Zabadani area near Damascus, Syria.
The mosaic covers an area of around 50 square metres and is the first of its kind to be found in the area of Damascus and its countryside. It is believed that the site where it was discovered functioned as a seat of a a kingdom established by the Itureans, a semi-nomadic tribe that rose to power in the aftermath of the decline of Seleucid power in the 2nd century BC, when, from their base around Mt. Lebanon and the Beqaa Valley, they came to dominate vast stretches of Syrian territory.
The mosaic covers the floor of a hall with a wide front entrance and other two narrow entrances. It consists of a patterns depicting geometric, plant-shaped, and symbolic decorations, all created with small stone tiles. According to researchers, the style indicates that the mosaic dates back to the end of the Roman era and the beginning of the Byzantine era.
(after Syrian Arab News Agency & Prensa Latina)