Early Christian Centre, Slovenia
I-V century A.D.

The Early Christian Centre archaeological park is situated on Erjavčeva cesta, right opposite the Cankarjev dom cultural centre. The archaeological excavations here unearthed a Roman residential building, built at the beginning of the 1st century A.D. During the nearly 500 years of its existence it was renovated several times. The first major rebuilding was undertaken in the early 4th century. On that occasion, the floors were renovated, the hypocaust heating was arranged and three small pools were added, suggesting that the building might have been turned into private baths.

A major alteration occurred at the beginning of the 5th century when a rectangular baptistery with a small pool in the centre intended for baptising was built alongside the central courtyard. The baptistery floor is covered in a multi-coloured mosaic with inbuilt inscriptions bearing the names of the Emonans who had donated the funds for its assembly. A portico, or possibly the northern nave of a basilica, featuring a coloured mosaic, lies next to the baptistery. The mosaic has an   inscription with the name of the builder, archdeacon Antiochus. The existence of a strong community of early Christians in Emona at that time is also confirmed by written records which refer to Emonan bishops.

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