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The micromosaic group depicts Pliny's Doves, and is set within an oval shaped black marble panel. There is also with a band of malachite around the micromosaic. The marble panel has been fitted into an ormolu frame with twin scrolling handles and decorated with garlands of flowers. It has a twisted outer rim and four scrolling legs leading to ball feet.
This micromosaic gained its name from the Roman writer Pliny's 'Natural History', in which he described a very fine mosaic by Sosus at Pergamon, which was known as the 'unswept house':
'From the fact that he there represented, in small squares of different colours, the remains of a banquet left as if by accident, and other things which are usually swept away by the broom. There is a dove, greatly admired, in the act of drinking, the shadow of its head reflected in the water, while other doves are sunning and grooming themselves on the edge of the bowl.' (book 36, chapter 184)
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