Israel Antiquities Authority workers recently discovered the footprints of artisans who made a 1,700-year-old mosaic floor in Lod.
The mosaic floor is one of the biggest and most remarkable to be found in Israel. The 180-square-meter mosaic includes colorful, detailed depictions of animals, plants and boats.
The impressive mosaic, discovered in 1996, is believed to be from the home of a wealthy man during the Roman period.
Following the initial discovery, the mosaic was covered back up due to a lack of resources to preserve it. After the Antiquities Authority and the Lod municipality found the money, it was recently uncovered again, in order to display it to the public.
While detaching the mosaic from the ground, Antiquities Authority workers discovered footprints and sandal prints in the plaster bedding below. Experts believe the prints were from the mosaic's creators, and that they packed the plaster with their feet.
The prints include sandal prints in sizes 34, 37, 42 and 44.
"We were very excited," said Jacques Neguer, head of the IAA Art Conservation Branch. "It is fascinating to find 1,700-year-old evidence of people who, just like us, worked on this very mosaic. You can really feel the generational continuity."