A. Benenson and Letizia Pitigliani

The “Palm Tree Room” of the Vigna Randanini catacombs—so called because palm trees with two bunches of dates were painted in each of the four corners of the room. To the left of the palm tree are two adult loculi with a garland between them, and to the right are three children’s loculi. On the upper half of the wall of the children’s loculi is a large blue fountain basin with water in it; flower sprigs grow on either side of it. Under it are the remains of a lozenge design with a circular design drawn inside it. The inner part of the doorway post (visible on the right) has painted panels with a rectangular design on top and a lozenge design on the bottom. The walls opposite the ones shown here are mirror images.

In 1953 E. R. Goodenough reported, “When I visited this room, water was streaming through the ceiling like a heavy shower, the result, said our guide, of irrigating the garden above it” (Jewish Symbols in the Greco-Roman Period, Volume II, p. 20). The tombs, he noted, had been plundered by robbers long ago.