6th century AD: The Madaba Map of Jerusalem

Some things are funnier than the other ones. The description, and interpretation of this Madaba Map is beyond any common sense. Check it out yourself, examine the below image. I was laughing so hard, my wife came down from upstairs to ask what was up.

The mosaicist conceived and carried out his masterwork with great topographical skill and biblical knowledge. The Madaba Mosaic map is deemed by some scholars to be the best topographic representation ever done before modern cartography. As a source of biblical topography the map is fully comparable with the well-known treatise on the biblical places written in Greek about 395 A.D. by the historian Eusebius of Caesarea and translated into Latin by Jerome about 490 A.D.
Really? (source)

Judging by the map, Peter, John and Andrew were butt naked in them boats.I have to tell you, that those Muslims were wild... real barbarians... covered the nudity...

The Madaba Map
The Madaba Map, is part of a floor mosaic in the early Byzantine church of Saint George in Madaba, Jordan. The Madaba Map is of the Middle East, and part of it contains the oldest surviving original cartographic depiction of the Holy Land and especially Jerusalem. It dates to the 6th century AD.
  • The Madaba Mosaic Map depicts Jerusalem with the New Church of the Theotokos, which was dedicated on November 20, 542. Buildings erected in Jerusalem after 570 are absent from the depiction, thus limiting the date range of its creation to the period between 542 AD and 570 AD.
  • The mosaic was rediscovered in 1884, during the construction of a new Greek Orthodox church on the site of its ancient predecessor. Patriarch Nicodemus I of Jerusalem was informed, but no research was carried out until 1896.
    • KD: What else is new, right?
  • In the following decades, large portions of the mosaic map were damaged by fires, activities in the new church and by the effects of moisture. In December 1964, the Volkswagen Foundation gave the Deutscher Verein für die Erforschung Palästinas ("German Society for the exploration of Palestine") 90,000 DM to save the mosaic. In 1965, the archaeologists Heinz Cüppers and Herbert Donner undertook the restoration and conservation of the remaining parts of the mosaic.
Taken between 1898 and 1946...


When was it discovered?
It seems so, and most likely was,for we have texts like the below 1906 book, clearly informing us that it was found pre-1897.



But then we have some super responsible historian claiming that it was discovered in 1918. What is it, inattention, indifference, a different mosaic map, or outright lies?



Copies of the Madaba Map
This is probably my favorite part. A copy of the map is in the collection of the Archaeological Institute at Göttingen University. It was produced during the conservation work at Madaba in 1965 by archaeologists of the Rheinisches Landesmuseum, Trier. A copy produced by students of the Madaba Mosaic School is in the foyer of the Akademisches Kunstmuseum at Bonn. The lobby of the YMCA in Jerusalem has a replica of the map incorporated in the floor.
  • ...we love copies, don't we?

KD: If Muslims had such a big issue with Jesus walking on water, wouldn't they mess up the entire map? If anything, it demonstrates that it does not matter what the actual depiction was. It's the accompanying narrative that counts.

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