Nikki Vellidis

Field research trip to the island of Kos, Greece

The British Archaeological Association generously granted me £500 to undertake a field research trip to the island of Kos, Greece to visit the Roman mosaic that serves as the first case study of my DPhil. My thesis focuses on the placement of mosaic pavements in Roman Era Greece back into their original context. I aim to reconstruct the ancient domestic space around them and discover the motivations behind the mosaicist and patron that influenced how individuals interacted physically and emotionally with the pavements. To perform this research, seeing the mosaics in person and, if possible, in their original contexts is essential.

In September 2022, I travelled to Kos to see my first case study – a mosaic showing the abduction of the Phoenician princess Europa by the god Zeus in the guise of a bull. The mosaic dates to the 3rd c. CE, comes from a domestic context, and remains in situ in the Western Archaeological Site of Kos. One of the most important aims of my field research was to photograph the mosaic and the room within which it sits, the preserved wall paintings in the room of the mosaic and the house overall, and the architectural elements of the house. I also took measurements throughout the house and of the mosaic, added details to the architectural plan, visited nearby sites for comparison, and visited the archaeological museum to view objects discovered in the house.

The funding provided by the British Archaeological Association allowed me to gain invaluable insight into the site of my first case study. It provided a stable basis upon which the future research of my DPhil will rest. I sincerely thank the BAA for awarding me this funding.