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Dernières notices ajoutées par région : Épire
Actium.   I. Trianti (Ioannina) reports on excavation at the Temple of Apollo.  The structure was 24.15m l. x 9.2m w., with a transverse wall (3.43m); the walls, in opus reticulatum, were preserved to a h. of 1.75m.  The partially preserved floor of the cella and pronaos was paved with pebbles.  In the centre of the cella, a base 0.55m square was found set into the ground, around which the floor was decorated in pebble lozenges.  The excavator observes that the base predated the floor, and this, together with the report of François Noël Champoiseau (who first explored the site in 1867) that around a square base in the cella were found fragments of a colossal statue and inscriptions with Hel and Ar letters, is taken to indicate the existence of an earlier temple. Champoiseau’s discovery of 2 6th Ct kouroi (Louvre Ma 687 and 688, of Naxian origin) at the site, plus new discoveries of Ar geison fragments, a column (3m h. with 24 flutes) and much Ar pottery, confirm this.  The Ar sanctuary was founded by the polis of Anaktorion, 7km away on the SE side of the gulf of Ambracia.  The Rom temple was built after the battle of Actium, and is likely contemporary with the foundation of Nikopolis and the victory monument of Octavian (29−27 BC). 

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Philippiada.  P.L. Vocotopoulos reconstructs the founder’s wall-paintings in the peristyle of the Church of the Panayia Pantanassa on the basis of fragments recovered at the W end of the S portico, and G. Velenis presents the inscriptions on them.  Two rulers are depicted (a man named Komnenos Doukas and his wife, Anna Komnenodoukene Palaiologina), being crowned by the Virgin holding Christ in her arms, along with two princes: these are likely Nikephoros I and his sons Thomas (proclaimed despot in spring 1294) and Thamar (who was married in summer 1294), thus providing a likely date for the painting.

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Thesprotia Expedition.  B. Forsén (Finnish Institute) reports on the 5th field season, which consisted of continued geo-archaeological work, further palynological sampling from Lake Kalodiki at Morphi and trial excavations at 3 sites.  Coring was also undertaken in Lake Acherousia to learn more about its general environmental development. The first site where trial trenches were opened, PS 12, lies on the lowermost E slope of the Liminari hill in the village of Sevasto.  Probes here in 2007 revealed mainly FNeo and EBA pottery, but also some LNeo and ENeo−MNeo sherds.  The aim was therefore to explore the ENeo and MNeo presence, and to estimate the site size.  In trench D2 more ENeo ‘impresso’ sherds were found, although no ENeo−MNeo layer.  The early sherds were found mixed with FNeo and EBA pottery and spindle-whorls.  In the hope of finding undisturbed ENeo to MNeo remains, probe H was located on a small terrace uphill. This produced remains of a dramatic erosion phase containing large stones mixed with bone, pottery and some roof tiles.  The finds are mostly historical in date, perhaps Ar or Cl, and indicate the existence of a settlement of this date somewhere higher upslope. The main trench was located N-S through what is believed to be the centre of the site.  Initially it was dug in 5 1m x 2m sequences, separated by a couple of metres, but, later, one of the tests was enlarged when remains of a rudimentary wall were found.  The wall, which consists of 2 courses of stones to a h. of 0.2−0.3m, was exposed to a l. of 9m without uncovering corners.  No floor level was found next to the wall.  Pottery of the FNeo and EBA, as well as some of MBA and LBA date, was found just above and around it.  Preliminary pottery analysis indicates some parallels with the FNeo and EBA repertoires at Doliana near Ioannina, Servia in Macedonia, Pefkakia in Thessaly and, to some extent, Lerna and Franchthi  in the Argolid.  Most of the EBA parallels are EHII.  Three C14 samples from trenches A (excavated in 2007) and D date to EHII, whereas the 2 samples taken next to the wall date to the MBA and LBA.  In order to study the size of PS 12, soil samples were taken in its immediate surroundings.  Preliminary results indicate that the site is much larger than previously thought, perhaps close to 100m x 100m. The 2nd site excavated was Ag. Donatos, Zervochori (PS 25), a small hill fortified around 300 BC.  Investigation focused on the ordinary house walls inside the fortification.  On the basis of intensive surface survey these seemed to be mostly ERom (opus incertum), although some pieces looked older (possibly Hel).  Four trenches were opened, revealing almost exclusively ERom (1st−2ndCt AD) finds.  By combining the opus incertum walls visible above the surface with those found in the trial trenches, the outlines of a large building, built on 2 terraces that open to the S, are seen.  The building is at least 140m x 30m, although it remains unclear where it ends towards the W.  Due to heavy erosion, especially around the Chapel of Ag. Donatos, the building is badly preserved and most of the trenches contained collapsed and mixed layers.  Part of the original concrete floor (cocciopesto) was found only in one trench.  It is clear that the building once was of high status, as shown by fragments of wall-painting (panels in different colours) and a few palmette antefixes (Fig. 1).  Probably it was a villa rustica founded within the abandoned EHel fortress at some stage during the reign of Augustus or Tiberius.  No finds date later than the ERom period, except for a grave ca. 10m N of the Chapel of Ag. Donatos.  The burial, 0.2m below the surface, was placed in a simple cist of 1−2 courses of rounded stones. No grave gifts were found with the skeleton, which probably belonged to a young woman.  Single human bones from other individuals were found close to the chapel, some even on the surface.  Obviously, there was a small cemetery next to the 17th Ct chapel, most likely contemporary with it. At Kioteza, Agora (PS 34), a small EHel fortification ca. 1km from Ag. Donatos was investigated to gain a better picture of its structure and date.  Two small trenches were opened, one in the only tower of the fortification, the other at the probable gate.  In the tower the rubble fill was encountered ca. 0.2m below the surface.  The trench located at the presumed gate produced very few finds, but supports the assumption that there was a gate here, some 1.15−1.2m w. and protected by indented traces on both sides. 

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Ellinika, Kopani.  C. Kleitsas (ΙΒ' ΕΠΚΑ), E. Kotjabopoulou and A. Panatsi (Archaeological Institute for Epirotic Studies) report on the first season of excavation at the site of Ellinika, on the SE flanks of Mt Olytsika (anc. Tomaros) at an elevation of 550masl. (Figs 2, 3).  Positioned along a possible anc. mountain route, the site commands a panoramic view of the complex valley network that ultimately leads from the Ionian coast to the oracular sanctuary of Dodona.  A number of fortified citadels, as yet unexcavated, are scattered close by (for example, Kalogeritsa − Theriakision, Ag. Georgios Kopanis, Mirodaphni Peston). Visible architectural remains, along with plundered Hel cist graves, were first reported here by I. Vokotopoulou (ADelt 23 [1968], B 292), but no systematic exploration was undertaken at that time. The principal aim was to explore the extent and character of the remains and establish the chronology of their use(s). A total area of some 400m2 was systematically investigated.  All deposits were dry sieved.  The outlines of at least 3 structures were revealed, aligned and juxtaposed along an E-W axis (Fig. 4).  The periboloi are made of limestone blocks quarried from nearby exposures and finally shaped in situ. Structure 1 has a ca. 6.3m long façade and contained a single plundered cist grave. The largest, Structure 3, is a Π-shaped burial enclosure (Fig. 5).  Its façade faces S and is 16.5m l. as currently revealed.  The 2 sides are probably different in length, the E side measuring 5.4m. Worked blocks of local limestone, with signs of advanced erosion, were used for the construction.  The façade is preserved to a h. of 4 courses (2m).  Three limestone cist graves, all plundered, were excavated in the W part of the interior (Fig. 1).  The E part of the interior appears to have been modified at a later date, probably for non-funerary purposes.   Structure 2 lies between Structures 1 and 3 and is later in date. Building materials and/or spolia from the enclosures were reused to demarcate a non-funerary activity space. This could be an ephemeral production and/or residential site on a trail linking the lowlands with high summer pasture.  Further E of the structures mentioned above, 2 more plundered graves were cleaned. The construction technique both of the enclosures and of the 6 graves investigated, in conjunction with the scanty pottery and other artefacts recovered, points to their initial close chronological association in EHel times (late fourth and third centuries).  The site probably served, perhaps intermittently and/or in part, as a burial complex until the LRom period, to judge from 8 third-century coins found in one of the graves inside the largest enclosure.  However, the large quantity of domestic handmade and wheelmade pottery, and the significant amount of animal bone found within the fill of the 2 enclosures and the area in between, suggest that at various times the limestone structures served non-funerary purposes. The burial enclosures at Ellinika form a rare example of this type of funerary monument in the interior of Epirus.  The custom is most often associated with coastal cities such as Ambrakia, Leukas and Anaktorio. The continuing collaborative project will also aim to identify the organized settlement(s) associated with this cemetery. 

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Paramythia. The ΛΒ’ ΕΠΚΑ reviews research in the Paramythia valley, where a number of Roman rural residences have been discovered (the valley was used exclusively for burials in later Classical and Hellenistic times). (Fig. 1) At Gephyrakia, a workshop was discovered surrounded by a dense network of water channels: the site produced coins of the Epirote koinon dating around 167BC.  Excavation at Mavromantila in 2005 revealed a large quantity of pottery of the 12th to seventh centuries BC, which seems to have tumbled from a higher location. This discovery may indicate the existence of a small kome on one of the mountain slopes which surround the valley. (Fig. 2).

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Riziani Parapotamou. The ΛΒ’ΕΠΚΑ reports the excavation of a funerary peribolos in use from the fourth to the second century BC, which contained five cist tombs and two funerary receptacles.  Three children and four adults could be recognised, all accompanied by rich grave goods.

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Koroni. The ΛΓ’ΕΠΚΑ reports investigation of an imposing Hellenistic building on the Tsoubari hill at the east entrance to the settlement, by the Kokytos river.  The building, characterized by S. Dakaris as of temple-form, was occupied into the Roman period, and the area as a whole into post-Byzantine times.

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