خارطة مادبا( Madaba Map )
The Madaba Map, also known as the Madaba Mosaic Map, is part of a floor mosaic in the early Byzantine church of Saint George in Madaba, Jordan. The Madaba Map depicts part of the Middle East and contains the oldest surviving original cartographic depiction of the Holy Land and especially Jerusalem. It dates to the sixth century AD.
The Madaba Mosaic Map depicts Jerusalem with the New Church of the Theotokos, which was dedicated on 20 November 542. Buildings erected in Jerusalem after 570 are absent from the depiction, thus limiting the date range of its creation to the period between 542 and 570. The mosaic was made by unknown artists, probably for the Christian community of Madaba, which was the seat of a bishop at that time.
In 614, Madaba was conquered by the Sasanian Empire. In the eighth century, the ruling Muslim Umayyad Caliphate had some figural motifs removed from the mosaic. In 746, Madaba was largely destroyed by an earthquake and subsequently abandoned.
The mosaic was rediscovered in 1884, during the construction of a new Greek Orthodox church on the site of its ancient predecessor. Patriarch Nicodemus I of Jerusalem was informed, but no research was carried out until 1896.
In the following decades, large portions of the mosaic map were damaged by fires, activities in the new church, and by the effects of moisture. In December 1964, the Volkswagen Foundation gave the Deutscher Verein zur Erforschung Palästinas (lit. "German Association for the Exploration of Palestine") 90,000 DM to save the mosaic. In 1965, the archaeologists Heinz Cüppers and Heinrich Brandt undertook the restoration and conservation of the remaining parts of the mosaic.