The mural mosaics of Thessaloniki are masterpieces of Byzantine art, of major historical and artistic importance. Nonetheless, they have not received the attention and enhancement they deserve, so as to make them accessible both to the general public and to specialist scholars. Old photographs of them continue to be reproduced and used. In the early twentieth century, during the Balkan wars and the First World war, Thessaloniki was epicentre of military operations and political formentations. In this period there was intense international scientific interest in the city's Byzantine monuments. Since the end of hostilities and the liberation of Thessaloniki (1912), there have been few publications relating to the city's monuments, excepting their systematic protection.
The authors of the book served consecutively from 1976 and for forty years as Ephors of Byzantine Antiquities of Thessaloniki. After the 1978 earthquakes, and with national and European funding, they directed works on the consolidation, conservation and presentation of the mosaics, together with their colleagues, archaeologists, architects and conservators of the Ephorate of Byzantine Antiquities of Thessaloniki. The research conducted has yielded new data on the mural mosaics of Thessaloniki, enriching our knowledge of these monumental creations of Byzantine art, offering the opportunity for scholars to study them and historians and connoisseurs to enjoy them. This book is a counter-gift of the authors, with which they reciprocate what they have gained from their many years of contact with the wonderful world of the mosaics. Kapon Editions guarantees the high quality of the volume with splendid photographs and original drawings befitting a Greek publication on the Byzantine mural mosaics of Thessaloniki. This book fills a major void.