A Group of Pilaster Capitals from Shivta: Marble Import in the Byzantine Negev

Moshe Fischer, Yotam Tepper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Photographs of a group of pilaster capitals of a unique design have been identified in the archive (ATQ 64/6: Shivta) of Harris D. Colt (1901–1973), the first excavator of Shivta. The marble capitals, which are presented and discussed here for the first time, were found during excavations at the North Church at Shivta (1933–1935) and can be dated to the second half of the 5th and mid-6th century ce. The pilaster capitals which are presented here are an evidence for marble imported to the Negev and the prosperity of Shivta during the Byzantine period, emphasizing the investment in the interior architectural decoration of the North Church and its religious significance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)35-51
Number of pages17
JournalPalestine Exploration Quarterly
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Palestine Exploration Fund 2021.


  • Byzantine architecture
  • Eastern Roman Empire
  • marble pilaster capitals
  • marble trade
  • Negev desert archaeology
  • North Church Shivta

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Archaeology
  • History
  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts
  • Religious studies
  • Archaeology


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