Archaeological News

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Posts tagged "greece"

A Greek archaeologist says she has discovered 20 new burials near Macedonia’s ancient capital in northern Greece, and some could tentatively be associated with the early Macedonian kings.

Excavator Angeliki Kottaridi says two of the poorly preserved graves excavated in a cemetery between 2012-2013 “might perhaps be linked” with Alexander I and his son, Perdiccas II.

Both reigned in the 5th century B.C., a century before the most famous ancient Macedonian king, Alexander III the Great.

In a statement Thursday, Kottaridi said the graves at Vergina—believed to be ancient Aegae—were looted and largely dismantled in antiquity. Surviving finds included vases and a sword.

A rich burial excavated decades ago at Vergina has been linked with Phillip II, father of Alexander the Great, although many experts disagree. (source)

In the wake of government austerity, some closest to Greece’s treasures are advocating turning them over to private companies

Many objects dug from the earth or drawn from the legends of Nemea could be used to promote the ancient Greek site: the mythological Nemean Lion slain by Hercules in the first of his seven feats; weights lifted by competitors during its ancient athletics; the bronze statue of the baby Opheltes, whose death is said to have inspired the games which rivaled those at Olympia further west.

That no replicas exist and the gift stand at the site’s museum instead sells copies of Cycladic idols from an archipelago 200km east infuriates Stephen Miller, an American archaeologist who has spent the last four decades unearthing Nemea’s treasures. “None of these had anything to do with Nemea,” he tells TIME, gesturing at the paltry selection in the glass cabinet. Read more.

Archaeologists working in the Katounistra area, in the spa town of Loutraki near the Corinth Ishthmus, Greece on Saturday announced the discovery of a large Roman villa that was in use up until the 6th century A.S. but also the remains of a spa and thermal baths facility nearby.

According to experts, the finds illustrate the importance of the Isthmus region in antiquity but also that the use of thermal springs had been developed in the region at that time.

The announcements were made during an event marking the end of the 2013 archaeological digs season in the area and included a tour of the site. Read more.

A 2,700-year-old portico was discovered this summer on the site of the ancient city of Argilos in northern Greece, following an archaeological excavation led by Jacques Perreault, Professor at the University of Montreal’s Centre of Classical Studies and Zisis Bonias, an archaeologist with the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports.

In ancient Greece, the portico—stoa in Greek—was a long, open structure that often housed shops and delineated public squares from the city—the agora.

"Porticos are well known from the Hellenistic period, from the 3rd to 1st century BC, but earlier examples are extremely rare. The one from Argilos is the oldest example to date from northern Greece and is truly unique," said Jacques Perreault, who is a specialist of the Greek Archaic period (7th and 6th centuries BC.) Read more.

Conventional wisdom agrees that a fine wine generally gets better with age — good news for the 6,200-year-old wine samples unearthed in Greece, huh?

Researchers working at an ongoing dig site in northern Greece recently announced that the final results of residue analysis from ancient ceramics showed evidence of wine dating back to 4200 B.C., according to the Greek Reporter. The excavation, located at a prehistoric settlement known as Dikili Tash, is situated 1.2 miles from the ancient city of Philippi and has been inhabited since 6500 B.C., according to the researchers’ website.

The analysis was not conducted on liquid wine, though. The passing millennia have erased nearly all tangible evidence of the drink. Read more.

Before the first ancient Olympics, as Homer was writing his Iliad, there was a bustling early Iron Age city in Greece. And then it all but disappeared.

Australian archaeologists will try to solve the ancient mystery of why the city was abandoned and whether a lack of fresh water was the cause.

They’re off to Zagora, a city that was thriving with farming and industry on the island of Andros in the 9th century BC before it was inexplicably abandoned.

That was about the time of Homer and before Sparta and the Athenian democracy.

Australia’s first archaeological dig in Greece was at Zagora in the 1960s and 1970s and they managed to excavate about 10 per cent of the 6.5 hectare site but did not solve the riddle. Read more.


A large number of Turkish and international athletes recently banned for doping might have been born just 2,000 years too late, according to new archaeological findings in the Aegean province of Aydın that suggest using performance-enhancing drugs in ancient Greece was not only permitted but celebrated.

Locals living in the ancient city of Magnesia produced potions from the mood-altering plant mandrake, researchers have said, noting that their involvement with the drug gave them pride of place.

“Part of the [local] stadium was allocated for people who came from the ancient city of Ephesus. It is also observed that some political groups as well as bakers, gardeners, bird sellers had combined tickets. Read more.

Greece’s Culture Ministry has warned against “overbold” speculation that an ancient artificial mound being excavated could contain a royal Macedonian grave or even Alexander the Great.

Site archaeologist Aikaterini Peristeri has voiced hopes of finding “a significant individual or individuals” within.

Greek websites enthused that it could hold the long-sought grave of 4th-century B.C. warrior-king Alexander the Great—thought to lie in Egypt.

A Culture Ministry statement Thursday said the partly-excavated mound has yielded a “very remarkable” marble-faced wall from the late 4th century B.C. It is an impressive 500 meters (yards) long and three meters high. (source)