Look and Think activities should take 5 -10 minutes.

Do activities might take longer depending on the task and how creative you are feeling!


Set a timer for 1 minute. Zoom in closely or look at the mosaic in 3D.

When the time is up, look away and make a list of what shapes, colours and details you can remember.

Now have another look and check your answers!


This beautiful mosaic niche once decorated a Roman villa in Baie, near Naples, in Italy.

It dates back to between AD50-70.

Can you find this date on our timeline?

What was happening in Britain at this time?


Roman mosaics were made of thousands of tiny coloured stones and gems. Each one was individually laid by hand into wet plaster.

Watch our video below and make your own mosaic.

Photograph of a niche with an ancient Roman mosaic in it. The mosaic shows plants, three birds flying at the top and a peacock perched on the edge at the bottom.
Look: Closer

Do: Make your own mosaic


More information

Mosiac floors and decorations were a statement of the wealth and importance of the owner, as many materials such as coloured stones or glass were rare and often expensive. The mosaic consists of a plaster background that has been covered with coloured squares, or tesserae, of glass and other materials including Egyptian blue, marble and other types of stone, bordered with shells.

The niche may have held a small statue and the mosaic would have provided an idyllic garden background with three birds coming to land and a colourful peacock already resting at the bottom. The presence of the peacock, an expensive bird and status symbol, indicates that the person who commissioned the mosaic was making a statement about his wealth and position.

Downloadable Resource

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