Decorative heritage of Bizere monastery: fragments of the opus sectile

Ileana Burnichioiu

The Bizere monastery gradually fell into ruin during the sixteenth century and the site became a treasure hunting ground and a quarry for construction material. Consequently, all that was left for the scholarship was fragmentary, difficult to patch together, and dependent on the archaeological investigations. This type of research first began in 1981 and carried on between 2001 and 2009, and in 2014, retrieved a notable quantity of mosaic, sculpture, and fresco fragments. This paper is dealing specifically with isolated opus sectile fragments. It analyzes the variety of materials and shapes, technical aspects, and tries to identify some elements of the original design. This study is connected to articles dedicated to mosaics discovered in situ at Bizere as well as to the archaeometric analysis of mosaic tesserae in this volume.