Versão em português
N.º 7
pp. 29-34


< Previous Next >

Study of materials and technology of ancient floor mosaics' substrate

Vincenzo Starinieri*, Ioanna Papayianni, Maria Stefanidou

Laboratory of Building Materials, Department of Civil Engineering, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, Greece



A floor mosaic's substrate is composed of a variety of preparatory layers of mortar built on natural levelled ground or on top of a previous pavement. Mosaics' substrates differ one from the other in number, thickness and nature of the mortar layers. In this sense, it has been considered relevant to state how these differences are related with historical period, geographical position, function of the pavements within the building, technology of the substrates. A number of floor mosaics' substrates of Hellenistic and Roman period from archaeological sites in Greece and Italy are under study. The stratigraphy of substrates is recorded in situ, and samples from each mortar layer are analysed in the laboratory by means of different techniques. Results obtained so far indicate that characteristics of the Roman substrates mortar layers are clearly dependant on their position in the substrate stratigraphy, whereas in the case of the Hellenistic substrates, characteristics of the mortar layers are less varying with the stratigraphic position. Furthermore results show that floor mosaics' substrates are different according to the function of the pavement in the building.









Download citation

RIS | Endnote


Conservar Património | APA | Chicago | NP405 | ABNT

Conservar Património:
Starinieri, V.; Papayianni, I.; Stefanidou, M., 'Study of materials and technology of ancient floor mosaics' substrate', Conservar Património 7 (2008) 29-34,

Starinieri, V., Papayianni, I., & Stefanidou, M. (2008). Study of materials and technology of ancient floor mosaics' substrate. Conservar Património, 7 29-34. DOI:10.14568/cp7_4.

Starinieri, Vincenzo, Ioanna Papayianni, and Maria Stefanidou. 2008. "Study of materials and technology of ancient floor mosaics' substrate." Conservar Património 7:29-34. doi:10.14568/cp7_4.

STARINIERI, Vincenzo [et al.] – Study of materials and technology of ancient floor mosaics' substrate. Conservar Património. [Em linha]. 7 (2008) 29-34 [Consult. ]. Disponível em WWW: <URL:>. ISSN 21829942.

STARINIERI, Vincenzo; PAPAYIANNI, Ioanna; STEFANIDOU, Maria. Study of materials and technology of ancient floor mosaics' substrate. Conservar Património, Lisboa, v. 7, p. 29-34, 2008. Disponível em: <>. Acesso em: .


Online: 2017-10-3
Publication: 2009-6-2


1 Genestar, C.; Pons, C.; Más, A., 'Analytical characterisation of ancient mortars from the archaeological Roman city of Pollentia (Balearic Islands, Spain)', Analytica Chimica Acta 557 (2006) 373-379.

2 Rilem Concrete Permanent Committee 14, 'CPC 11.3 Absorption of water by immersion under vacuum', Materials and Structures 17 (101) (1984) 391-394.

3 Karatasios, I.; Watt, D.; Colston, B., 'Characterisation and development of mortars for the conservation of Byzantine floor mosaics', in Conservation Science 2002, Papers from the Conference held in Edinburgh, Scotland, 22-24 May 2002, ed. J.H. Townsend, K. Eremin and A. Adriaens, Archetype Publications, London (2003) 121-126.

4 Papayianni, I.; Stefanidou, M., 'Strength-porosity relationships in lime-pozzolan mortars', Construction and Building Materials 20 (2006) 700-705.

5 Puertas, F.; Blanco-Varela, M.T.; Palomo, A.; Ortega-Calvo, J.J.; Ariño, X.; Saiz-Jimenez, C., 'Decay of Roman and repair mortars in mosaics from Italica, Spain', Science of the Total Environment 153 (1994) 123-131.

Stable url:

< Previous Next >
ARP | Associação Profissional de Conservadores-Restauradores de Portugal