Archaeologists on Monday entered the antechamber of Greece’s mystery tomb in Amphipolis — only to find another wall blocking the tomb’s interior as well as worrying evidence of looting in the form of a suspicious opening.
Before entering the vestibule, or antechamber, the archaeologists had to remove dozens of massive stones which sealed the entrance of the huge burial complex.
“Now the front of the monument has been revealed almost entirely,” the culture ministry said in a statement.
The tomb’s arched entrance featured a highly original composition for this type of Macedonian tomb, dating from the last quarter of the 4th century B.C. Read more.
As archaeologists continue to clear dirt and stone slabs from the entrance of a huge tomb in Greece, excitement is building over what excavators may find inside.
The monumental burial complex — which dates back to the fourth century B.C., during the era of Alexander the Great — is enclosed by a marble wall that runs 1,600 feet (490 meters) around the perimeter. It has been quietly revealed over the last two years, during excavations at the Kasta Hill site in ancient Amphipolis in the Macedonian region of Greece.
Excavators recently unearthed the grand arched entrance to the tomb, guarded by two broken but intricately carved sphinxes. Read more.
Archaeologists working at the ancient city of Corinth, Greece, have discovered a tomb dating back around 2,800 years that has pottery decorated with zigzagging designs.
The tomb was built sometime between 800 B.C. and 760 B.C., a time when Corinth was emerging as a major power and Greeks were colonizing the coasts of the Mediterranean Sea.
The tomb itself consists of a shaft and burial pit, the pit having a limestone sarcophagus that is about 5.8 feet (1.76 meters) long, 2.8 feet (0.86 m) wide and 2.1 feet (0.63 m) high. When researchers opened the sarcophagus, they found a single individual had been buried inside, with only fragments of bones surviving. Read more.
Two sphinxes weighing around 1.5 tons each will not be moved from the entrance to the tomb at Ancient Amphipolis currently being excavated by archaeologists.
It has also been decided that a mosaic displaying black and white rhombus shapes will not be moved either, Kathimerini has been told.
Technical work began on Monday at the tomb in Central Macedonia, northern Greece, to ensure there will be no collapse or other damage as archaeologists attempt to enter the tomb and discover what lies inside.
There are indications that the tomb has been raided in the past but archaeologists are not yet in a position to confirm this. Read more.
Archaeologists have unearthed a vast ancient tomb in Greece, distinguished by two sphinxes and frescoed walls and dating to 300-325 B.C., in the country’s northeast Macedonian region, the government said on Tuesday.
It marks a significant discovery from the early Hellenistic era, although a Culture Ministry official said there was no evidence yet to suggest a link to Alexander the Great, who died in 323 B.C. after an unprecedented military campaign through the Middle East, Asia and northeast Africa, or his family.
The official said the Amphipolis site, situated about 100 km (65 miles) northeast of Greece’s second-biggest city Thessaloniki, appeared to be the largest ancient tomb to have been discovered in Greece. Read more.
KAVOUSI, Greece — High on a hill overlooking the Mirabello Bay and what the poet Homer called the “wine dark sea,” work resumed in June uncovering an ancient city that had been lost for millennia.
Archaeologists and students from North Carolina and across the U.S., as well as local Crete workers, were using shovels, picks, trowels and sieves in a quest to understand the mysteries of Azoria, a city destroyed by fire about 2,500 years ago.
So far, no graveyards have been found, and depictions of language on pottery at the site are indecipherable. So clues must be gathered from the remnants of buildings, personal items, implements and food. Read more.
More than 10,600 artifacts dating from Neolithic times that were removed illegally by Nazi archaeologists during World War II have been returned to Greece from the German Pfahlbaumuseum, the state-run Athens-Macedonia News Agency (AMNA) reported on Tuesday.
The items were officially handed back to Greece during a low-key ceremony attended by Greek and German officials in Athens, including Culture Minister Constantinos Tasoulas, German Ambassador to Athens Wolfgang Dold and Pfahlbaumuseum Director Gunter Schoebel.
The return of the artifacts, most of which were excavated in the Thessaly region in 1941 during an operation organized by Hitler’s chief ideologist Alfred Rosenberg, arose from a doctoral thesis by Angelica Douzougli, an honorary ephor of antiquities. She located the artifacts in the 1970s over the course of research conducted in Germany and has since spearheaded the campaign for their repatriation. Read more.
Wild, windswept, rocky and remote, Astypalaia is not an obvious place for the unearthing of some of the world’s earliest erotic graffiti.
Certainly, Dr Andreas Vlachopoulos, a specialist in prehistoric archaeology, didn’t think so when he began fieldwork on the Aegean island four years ago. Until he chanced upon a couple of racy inscriptions and large phalluses carved into Astypalaia’s rocky peninsula at Vathy. The inscriptions, both dating to the fifth and sixth centuries BC, were “so monumental in scale” – and so tantalisingly clear – he was left in no doubt of the motivation behind the artworks.
"They were what I would call triumphant inscriptions," said the Princeton-trained professor who found them while introducing students to the ancient island world of the Aegean. "They claimed their own space in large letters that not only expressed sexual desire but talked about the act of sex itself," he told the Guardian. "And that is very, very rare." Read more.