Zev Radovan

After the Muslim conquest of Jerusalem in 638 C.E., a more conservative aesthetic became the norm in Palestine. The mosaic floor from the eighth-century C.E. synagogue at Jericho, for example, features a very traditional set of images (shown here, compare with photo of mosaic floor at Ein Gedi), but no representations of humans or animals. Inside a roundel at the center of the floor, three familiar Jewish religious symbols are depicted—a palm frond, a menorah and a ram’s horn. Beneath them a brief Hebrew inscription reads “peace upon Israel.&rd