Gaza Farmer Discovers Byzantine Mosaic While Planting Olive Tree

A Byzantine mosaic discovered by chance by an olive farmer in Gaza has been described as the most significant of its type ever to have been found in the area.

Haaretz said the mosaic, dating from between the 5th and 7th centuries, was discovered months ago in the Bureij refugee camp near the Israeli border when a farmer was attempting to plant an olive tree.

The farmer and his son spent several months excavating what they had found, with Palestinian authorities announcing “a major archeological finding” on September 16.

“These are the most beautiful mosaic floors discovered in Gaza, both in terms of the quality of the graphic representation and the complexity of the geometry," Rene Elter, an archaeologist from the French Biblical and Archaeological School of Jerusalem, told the Associated Press. Credit: Mohamed el Saife via Storyful