DKB STIFTUNG - Schloss & Gut Liebenberg / Schirmer [CC BY-NC-SA]

It is not certain which battle is depicted in the mosaic: the Battle of Issus (333 BC) or the Battle of Gaugamela (331 BC). Alexander's victory over the Persians was a turning point in the ancient world and heralded the spread of Hellenism in the East. At the same time, the new Greek-oriental sphere of communication paved the way for the influence of the Eastern civilisations throughout the Mediterranean world.

The young Alexander lost his helmet in the fight. This gives the artist the opportunity to represent him in a typical way with a swirl of hair over his forehead.The young Alexander lost his helmet in the turmoil of battle. This allows the artist to depict him in the typical way with a whirl of hair on his forehead. Alexander's breastplate is decorated with an image of the Gorgon Medusa, and his horse Bukephalos is wearing a lion skin - both attributes of the Greek heroes Perseus and Heracles.

The Persian High King Darius III looks back in horror and his chariot is already being turned around ready to flee. He wears a purple shirt over a white undergarment. The two colours and the chariot identify him, as ruler as well as a priest.

The standard of the fleeing Persians depicts a golden cock. We do not know what this looked like in the original mosaic. This section is not preserved. It may have been a gryphon, a creature with the body of a lion and a bird of prey, the heraldic animal of the Persians. We can only speculate why Karl zu Hertefeld, who ordered the restoration, had a cock inserted. Perhaps he wanted to allude to the Gallic rooster, which became the heraldic animal of France during the French Revolution. Which means it could be a dig at the defeat of France in the German wars of liberation.

Who is the nobleman in the middle of the picture? He must have been one of the closest and most loyal followers of the Persian High King Darius IV. He intercepts the lance thrust in the direction of his ruler with his body. The richly decorated clothes suggest that he was a high Persian nobleman or perhaps even a member of the family of Darius IV.

The clothing of the fighters is characteristic of the two opposing peoples. The Greeks are signified by the Corinthian helmet and breastplate. The Persian warriors, on the other hand, often wear richly decorated robes made from yellow cloth and turbans as well as characteristic ornaments such as torques around their necks.

The faces of the Persians show horror, surprise and panic. Blindsided by the sudden advance of the Greek cavalry, the Persian ranks dissolve. At Issos and at Gaugamela, it was a tactical manoeuvre on the part of Alexander that decided the battle against the Persians and their superior army. Each time he stormed into enemy lines inside the circle of his mounted Hetairoi, an elite troop, a surprise attack that broke the resistance; finally he appeared before Darius entirely unexpectedly. Darius then fled in a panic.

Provenance/Rights: DKB STIFTUNG - Schloss & Gut Liebenberg / Schirmer [CC BY-NC-SA]

Fliesenmosaik mit Schlachtszene aus dem Orient

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Schloss und Gut Liebenberg

Fliesenmosaik mit Schlachtszene aus dem Orient

Das Kachel-Mosaik zeigt eine ergänzte Nachbildung des 1831 bei Ausgrabungen in Pompeji in der „Casa del Fauno“ (Haus des Fauns) gefundenen römischen Mosaiks, welches etwa 2300 Jahre alt ist. Dargestellt ist eine kriegerische Begegnung zwischen dem Makedonier Alexander dem Großen und dem persischen Großkönig Dareios III.: entweder die Schlacht von Issos 333 v.Chr. oder die von Gaugamela 331 v.Chr.....Reiter und Kämpfer zu Fuß sowie Streitwagen sind in eine heftige Auseinandersetzung verwickelt. In höchster Anspannung und Kampfbereitschaft sehen wir den jugendlichen König Alexander, wie er auf seinem berühmten Pferd Bukephalos von links heranreitet und mit seiner langen Lanze einen Angehörigen der Leibgarde durchbohrt. Rechts wendet sich Dareios auf seinem Streitwagen mit seinem Wagenlenker schon zur Flucht. Nur sein entsetzter Blick und seine Armbewegung weisen in Richtung des ihn verfolgenden Alexanders. Es ist der Zusammenprall zweier Reiche und Kulturen auf einen Zweikampf konzentriert. Der Ältere und scheinbar Mächtigere unterliegt dem Jüngeren und wird damit in seiner Herrschaft abgelöst... ..Das pompejanische Mosaik hat wahrscheinlich ein in der Antike sehr berühmtes Bild zur Vorlage, welches gleich nach dem Sieg der Griechen über die Perser noch im 4.Jahrhundert v.Chr. entstanden sein muss.

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© DKB STIFTUNG - Schloss & Gut Liebenberg & Schirmer ; Licence: CC BY-NC-SA (
Mosaik, Ausgrabung, Orient, Nachbildung, Alexandermosaik


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2019:12:16 18:24:43+01:00
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© DKB STIFTUNG - Schloss & Gut Liebenberg & Schirmer ; Licence: CC BY-NC-SA (
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Löwenberger Land / OT Liebenberg
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Parkweg 1a
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(033094) 700 256
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DKB STIFTUNG - Schloss & Gut Liebenberg
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