Mosaic of Menorah with Lulav and Ethrog
Made in Tunisia, excavated Hammam Lif Synagogue
22 5/8 x 34 15/16 x 1 3/4 in. (57.4 x 88.8 x 4.4 cm)
Brooklyn Museum, New York, Museum Collection Fund (05.26)
Not on view
The Hammam Lif SynagogueA large mosaic found at the Tunisian town of Hammam Lif is so closely aligned with regional conventions that its structure was first identified as a Byzantine church. The presence of a Latin dedicatory inscription identifying the site as "Sancta Sinagoga" (Holy Synagogue), flanked by two Menorahs, revealed that it was a synagogue. The floor consisted of four mosaic carpets, integrating distinctly Jewish symbolism with popular motifs of the period, including a lion.The menorah was often depicted flanked by symbolic ritual objects. Here, what appear to be the ethrog (citron) and lulav (date-palm branch) of the festival of Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles) were altered during restoration of the mosaic.