The area where the rare mosaic was found in Durrës is taken under protection

Worker taking care of the mosaic found in Durrës
 Worker taking care of the mosaic found in Durrës
 In the city of Durrës, the Ministry of Culture has taken under protection an area where a rare mosaic was discovered in mid-October of this year.

The mosaic came to light when the foundations of a high school were being excavated for reconstruction, as it had been damaged by the earthquake in November four years ago.

Archaeologist Luan Përzhita says the mosaic is in very good condition, covering an area of over 60 square meters.

"We are fortunate as the discovered mosaic is in very good condition. It adorned the territory of a luxurious villa, near the amphitheater of Durrës, and regarding its dating, we think it is somewhere from the end of the 1st century BC to the beginning of the 1st century AD. Today, we speak of what we know, but perhaps future developments will provide a more accurate dating for this mosaic. The mosaic itself is unique, especially for the city of Durrës and for Albania, and it is part of the further heritage of this ancient legacy added to the city, known as the city of Dyrrachium in antiquity."

Mr. Përzhita further states that the area holds archaeological value but has also been affected by construction over the years.

"It is too early to speak. What we know is that the high school 'Gjergj Kastrioti' was built here in the 1960s-1970s. Also, in this area in the 1970s, a large bunker was built by Italian forces. These constructions, as we have seen, have occasionally damaged the archaeological structures in this territory. There is also a corner of the school that is connected to the part of the mosaic that had foundations in this area."

Archaeological excavation in the area is delicate, but the collaboration between state and local structures, as well as the initiative working on the school reconstruction, is quite good, says Maringlen Meshini, an archaeologist in the Rescue Archaeology Sector.

"We are in optimal conditions where, parallel to the project, we have all the possibilities to carry out the rescue archaeological excavation, which is just one of the phases of this process. After the archaeological excavation is completed, we will see the entire situation in a broader context of how these archaeological findings, these discoveries, the mosaic itself, and other objects relate to the project, and then we will have another decision for the future of this area."

Mr. Meshini further states that the discovery is one of the future postcards of Albanian tourism and cultural heritage.

"Considering the nature of this discovery, its dimensions, its quality above all, and what it represents in the context where it is located, let's say preliminarily that we are dealing with a postcard of Albanian tourism and cultural heritage."

While Mr. Përzhita says that not only the mosaic but also other archaeological findings are expected to provide more information about this area.

The subsoil of Durrës occasionally brings new archaeological discoveries, but the burden of constructions, in many cases, has damaged and threatened various historical periods of the development of the ancient city.
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