Chronique des fouilles en ligne
Respecter   tous les
  au moins un
critère(s) de recherche    Plus une Moins une Remise à zéro

Dernières notices ajoutées par région : Péloponnèse
Isthmia. E. Gebhard (ASCSA/Chicago) reports. Further study of the Ar temple (F. Hemans) confirmed the elevation of the floors of the pteron and the top of the stylobate. What had been considered to be a step at the SE corner of the façade in fact belongs to a foundation for the stylobate. The circular base interpreted as supporting the marble perirrhanterion at the NE pteron bears evidence of being set into the floor before being finished, and the floor was evidently laid at the same time against it. The monument is contemporary with the construction of the temple. The same may be true of an iron tripod of the 7th Ct BC, the feet of which were found in situ adjacent to the perirrhanterion base. Study of the distribution of LAr and Cl cooking wares (M. Risser, B. Cheney and E. Michael) shows that roasting and boiling of sacrificial meat generally took place in different parts of the sanctuary, with some meat roasted at the altar and the remainder boiled in proximity to the communal feast. Some stewpots and covered serving platters from the reservoir (Large Circular Pit) are unusually large, while vessels used for individual servings are slightly smaller than similar examples from domestic contexts in Corinth. Kotylai, skyphoi and one-handled cups may have fulfilled a dual function at the feast, used both as bowls for food and cups for wine. Study of worked stone tools (I. Gatsov, P. Nadelzheva) nears completion: objects relate to food production (querns and other grinding stones) and construction (masons’ floats and hammers), and also include gaming boards and a sun dial.   T. Gregory (ASCSA/Ohio) reports on a further study season on finds from the Rom bath, the area E of the temenos (East Field), and the Byz fortress. Conservation of the mosaics in the Rom bath continued, especially those in rooms VI and XII, as did the cleaning and stabilization of old trenches in the areas S of the Rom bath and E of the temenos. In the area of the Rom bath, a new series of doorways to the Cl bath was discovered, and a drystone wall constructed along the whole S side of the Rom bath. Study of the anc. architectural blocks in the area of the so-called Hexamilion outworks, NE of the Rom bath, continued, with a pilot study for the use of RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology for the location and detailed recording of these blocks in the field. Many previously unknown architectural pieces were identified, perhaps all from the same building. Thus 2 additional Doric epistyle-frieze blocks were identified, bringing the total of blocks of this type to 10. The removal of soil and landscaping of the area of the Hexamilion outworks, between the Rom bath and the Byz fortress, along the S side of the large ravine that runs from the centre of the Isthmus to the Saronic Gulf, resulted in the levelling of much of the soil E of the bath and S of the Hexamilion. In this operation, designed to open the area to visitors, the foundations of a large building (ca. 10m x 16m) of the 1st-2nd Ct AD were discovered. This building was entered through a doorway leading from the area NE of the Rom bath, and was connected in some way with the large E-W building(s) that lie essentially unexplored between the bath and the fortress.

Lire la suite
Kenchreai, Koutsongila. E. Korka (Ministry of Culture), J. Rife (ASCSA/Macalester College) and P. Kasimi (ΛΖ' ΕΠΚΑ) report on a further season of excavation on the Koutsongila ridge N of the anc. harbour in the 3 major areas begun in 2007. Nine new trenches were opened and 5 distinct buildings explored (Fig. 1).   Area A is the open slope at the S end of Koutsongila, with a commanding view of the harbour (Fig. 2). Exploration focused on a substantial long wall and a rectangular building, first uncovered in 2007 (Fig. 3). A 6m l. stretch of a massive wall was uncovered, with a foundation of blocks and overlying rubble in irregular courses. Its purpose and date are uncertain, but against its W face is a dense deposit of large E-MRom sherds: thus the wall was constructed no later than the ERom period (1st-2nd Ct AD). Its plan, the associated stratigraphy and the absence of nearby walls all suggest that the structure was neither part of an enclosed building nor served to retain soil. It may have defined a significant space, for example to delimit settlement or trace a precinct. Excavation of the rectangular building (ca. 7.9m x 5.8m) was completed. Three walls on a prominent bedrock outcrop survive. These consist of a few recycled ashlar blocks and dense rubble set in a coarse mortar and finished on the interior with a fine white plaster. The S wall is poorly preserved, but the entrance seems to have been located in the SE corner, where 2 adjacent steps (one paved) were cut into the bedrock. This building had 3 main phases of use from the ERom to EByz periods. In its original form, starting in the 1st Ct AD, it had a circular pit at its centre (ca. 0.91m di. x 0.33m d.) and a low bench or platform along the back (N) wall. The pit might have held a large vessel or basin supported by struts in the manner of a tripod, or it might have been a firepit for a brazier that was later cleaned out. Together with the facing bench, it seems to indicate some ritual activity, such as ablutions or sacrifices. After this, perhaps in the 4th-5th Ct, a series of 5 low, parallel compartments oriented N-S (ca. 0.75-0.85m w.) were made across the middle of the building from strips of mortar and rubble. The presence of numerous human bones, lamps and coins, intermingled by later disturbance, suggests that these compartments contained multiple burials. In the 6th-7th Ct, cist graves (G46-48, G55, G56, G59) were dug around the edges of the dilapidated and plundered building. It is noteworthy that a conspicuous ERom building with a ritual function was converted to funerary use in LAntiquity, as the major cemetery to the N was apparently expanding S toward the harbour.   Area B is the low-lying area near the SE edge of Koutsongila where abundant structural remains were found in 2007 (Fig. 4). Two ERom buildings can be identified, or perhaps one large complex with 2 distinct wings, separated by a narrow passageway. They are situated on roughly the same axis as the complex (probably a seaside villa) which was excavated at the base of the N mole in the 1960s and share many structural features with it. Only the backs of the buildings have so far been excavated, so their size remains unknown, but they might have measured as much as 25-30m front to back, assuming that they extended all the way to the anc. cliff edge. To the N was a large rectangular structure with irregular rubble walls, founded directly onto the bedrock outcrop and paved with uneven terracotta tiles (Fig. 5). Its most distinctive feature is a series of 5 almost conical pits thinly lined with plaster (ca. 0.86m di. and ca. 0.3m d.). These were probably either cuttings for large vessels (pithoi) or bothroi for storage. The pits, together with the overall appearance of the structure, point to a utilitarian or small-scale industrial function, such as a workshop or storage space. The relationship between this building and the one to the S is uncertain, but their proximity suggests that they were linked. The N building seems to have operated during the ERom period, but it remains unclear whether it was first used in the 1st or 2nd Ct. In contrast, the building to the S was opulent (Figs 4, 6). The walls were built from a mixture of fine brick masonry and irregular rubble. Fragments of painted plaster and moulded marble revetment in variegated colours and textures (Fig. 7) found throughout the building show that the walls had a decorative finish, while small tesserae in diverse colours come from the paved floor. Three rooms have been excavated. The northernmost is a narrow corridor with a well at the back. This well was filled to a d. of ca. 5m with structural and domestic debris, such as kitchen vessels and animal bones, which was apparently dumped when the building was cleaned after either a period of total disuse or an event of destruction, such as the major earthquake(s) that struck the region in the L4th Ct. To the S is a finely constructed water tank with a lead pipe in the SW corner draining into the 3rd space to the S, which has a central basin surrounded by a channel. The small scale of these hydraulic features, and the frequent presence of kitchen vessels and faunal remains, indicate that this is a private, rather than a large public, bathing facility, within a larger house. It appears to have been built and first used during the E-MRom periods (ca. 1st-3rd Ct), but may also have had a LRom phase.   Area C is located in the heart of the cemetery, W of tombs 3 and 23, where 2 wheelruts and 16 LRom-EByz cist graves had been uncovered. Excavation of the Southwest Building, an ERom above-ground chamber tomb, was completed. This rectangular building (ca. 6.2m x 5.8m) had ashlar foundations set into bedrock and walls of brick in even courses finished with white plaster. Inside, the N wall had a bench cut from bedrock and the S wall a bench built from large slabs. In the middle W area of the floor, which was finished with mortar, cuttings may indicate the presence of altars. The rock-cut cist in the N bench (G50) reveals that the building was used for burial. However, the Southwest Building had collapsed in a single event during the M2nd Ct (or later) before it was filled with burials. The tomb was never rebuilt and the ashlar foundations were robbed,but during LAntiquity (as late as the 6th Ct) simple cist graves were created in the destruction debris and the robbed foundation trenches (G53, G58, G60). Investigation of the loculi inside tomb 7 was completed. These contained the remains of at least 37 individuals of all ages who had been buried during the L1st-3rd Ct. The numerous funerary artefacts represented types well-known from other tombs on Koutsongila: glass vessels, coins, earrings and finger rings, bone pins and lamps. Since tomb 7 seems to have received less attention from looters than many other chambers on Koutsongila, it will provide especially good evidence for reconstructing funerary rituals.   Important observations derive from these discoveries concerning social structure, topography and settlement history at Rom Kenchreai. First, the wealth implied by decorative art in the buildings of area B, as well as in the richest of the chamber tombs, reflects the great prosperity of local élites. The high quality of the wall-painting, marble sculpture and mosaic paving on Koutsongila compares with the finest instances from Rom Corinth. Moreover, we continue to find artefacts, particularly vessels and coins, that reveal the port’s E connections. Secondly, the small ERom building with a ritual function in area A might indicate the presence of a sanctuary or demarcate the S limit of the cemetery. Thirdly, the above-ground tomb in area C is the first of its type found on Koutsongila. Its situation just W of the wheelruts shows that this main road into the harbour was flanked by impressive tombs. Finally, evidence for burial activity across the ridge until the L6th or 7th Ct proves that the port settlement survived into EByz times, but apparently contracted S toward the harbour.

Lire la suite
Anc. Corinth. G. Sanders (ASCSA) reports on continued excavation in the area S of the South Stoa where H. Robinson had revealed a complex of Med and post-Med houses in the early 1960s (Fig. 1). Work concentrated on 7 rooms and the courtyard of a Byz house, in which successive beaten earth floors were removed to expose the foundation trenches of the original walls (Fig. 2). The house consists of 9 rooms and a central courtyard. Two rooms flank a corridor leading from the entrance on Lechaion Road South to the court. The remainder flank the courtyard. The complex was supplied with water from a well in the court. On the S side of the courtyard, a stair ascended to a veranda and upper storey over the SE 3 rooms. The house was built in the 2nd half of the 11th Ct and remained occupied for 2 centuries. In the 13th Ct, the W range of rooms was assimilated into a property standing to the W, while the E part of the house continued in independent use. Three spaces produced significant metal finds (Fig. 3). The SW room, a semi-basement, had an assemblage of Fr tools including a scythe, a knife, an axe-hammer and a spear point. Beneath the stair ascending to the 2nd storey were a Byz ladle or lamp, an adze-hammer and a keyhole plaque. Outside and to the NW was a dump of iron door fittings, including parts of lock mechanisms and keyhole plaques. The house provides a valuable complement to the Fr complex excavated by C.K. Williams S of the museum in the 1990s and has parallels in the upper strata of the Stoa Poikile in the Athenian Agora. The Med house will be conserved and will remain exposed as an example of a Byz domicile at Corinth.

Lire la suite
Stymphalos. H. Williams (Canadian Institute/British Columbia) reports on continuing study of the pottery, lamps and figurines from the 1994-2005 excavations, and on the preparation of an exhibition for the new 19th Ct folk-life museum being built by the Piraeus Bank Foundation near the lake. In June 2009, deep cores were drilled in and around the lake as part of a project to study the geomorphological history of the area. Taken with smaller cores recovered in 2007, these offer much promising material on the environmental history of the site through the past millennia.

Lire la suite
Nemea. K. Shelton (ASCSA/Berkeley) reports on the 2008 season of study and conservation at the Sanctuary of Zeus. Work continued in the preparation of Nemea IV: The Shrine of Opheltes: a separate publication on the early stadium and the hippodrome is expected. Study continued for Nemea X: Chronology, with the ongoing analysis and cataloguing of the major ceramic deposits. Sherds from deposits in grid squares, M12, N17, K14/15, L17, F18 and G18 were examined. An additional study was conducted on pottery from a votive deposit excavated by Blegen in 1925 to the E of the site. At the Temple of Zeus, work continued on the foundations and krepidoma at the E end, especially the NE corner, and on restoration of the columns. Classification and registration of fragments of architectural sculpture continued, mostly from the Ar and LCl Temples of Zeus. Several larger fragments with preserved mutules and guttae retain some of the original painted decoration on the worn marble surface (Fig. 1).

Lire la suite
Nemea, Agia Sotira cemetery. R.A.K. Smith (Canadian Institute/Brock), M.K. Dabney and J.C. Wright (Bryn Mawr College) report on the 2008 season of excavation in the LBA chamber-tomb cemetery on the hillside of Ag. Sotira, outside the village of Koutsomadi near anc. Nemea. Newly-acquired land N of the field investigated in 2006 and 2007 (Fig. 1) was explored using ground-penetrating radar and magnetometry, with test trenches to investigate anomalies. No tombs were found. This was followed by an extensive programme of test trenching. Trenches were excavated E-W at ca. 4m intervals. A fissure at the NW limit of this area proved to be the collapsed chamber of tomb 6, making it possible to excavate both the chamber and the dromos simultaneously. The tomb had undergone multiple openings. Since in most cases the dromos was excavated down to the floor level of its previous use, only 2 major fill episodes are clearly visible. Pottery from the dromos included carinated kylix sherds. Excavation of the stomion correlated well with the various levels observed in the dromos. The lowest level, beneath the blocking wall, contained multiple thinly compressed floor levels, from which samples were taken for micromorphological analysis. Above these levels, it is apparent that the stomion was rebuilt during a secondary use of the tomb. The S side, facing the dromos, was set back, and the top of the E face of the doorway reconstructed with rubble masonry. This masonry continued into the chamber E of the stomion. It seems that during an opening of the tomb, the E side of the stomion and part of the SE portion of the chamber collapsed and were rebuilt. Evidence for this was preserved in stratified layers of humus and silt sloping down into the collapsed chamber from S to N. In associated levels, 2 vessels, preliminarily dated to the Geo period, were discovered above the stomion. Excavation of the chamber revealed the interment of a minimum of 9 individuals with 14 ceramic vessels. On the floor was a layer of poorly preserved burials, including 2 primary and 3 secondary burials. In addition, a pit was discovered in the SW area of the chamber just W of the stomion; this contained 4 or 5 secondary burials. The bones in this pit were better preserved, and included 2 adults and 2 or 3 sub-adults or children. The ceramic vessels in the chamber were associated with the burials outside of the pit, and can be preliminarily dated from LHIIIA2 to LHIIIB2. They include stirrup jars, jugs, an alabastron and a flask dated to LHIIIB1.  (Fig. 2). Organic residue analysis is in process, as is phytolith analysis from soil samples taken from the dromos, stomion and chamber. Tomb 6 is similar to the other tombs discovered in this cemetery, which are very modest in terms of the wealth contained. The cemetery was most heavily used in LHIIIA2 and LHIIIB1, with some evidence for early activity in LHIIIA1, and it continued in use on a lesser scale into LHIIIB2. The cemetery was probably associated with the nearby settlement at Tsoungiza, and contained family tombs reused over generations. In tomb 6, the importance of continuity is emphasized by the fact that those who conducted burials here felt it important to reconstruct a tomb that had collapsed during its period of use.

Lire la suite
Kleonai. T. Mattern (DAI/Marburg) and K. Kissas (Director, ΛΖ' ΕΠΚΑ) report on a collaborative pilot project to produce an inventory of remains in the immediate surroundings of the anc. city, through a combination of field survey of the area immediately to the S, recording of previously known sites and analysis of Ephoreia records. An initial overview of this evidence will be of value in its own right, as well as a tool to assist in co-ordinating the protection of archaeological monuments. Results include the identification of anc. roadways in the immediate vicinity of the city, some flanked by funerary monuments. Several extramural sanctuaries were located; they probably include Khan Kourtesa, S of the city, the location of a spring, a mod. church and several members of a monumental Doric structure, including part of a geison (Fig. 1). Together with earlier discoveries of grave material in the immediate vicinity of the Khan, this suggests a locus of settlement here. To the NE of the Temple of Herakles, several architectural members may suggest a further extramural sanctuary, and S of the city wall there is evidence of dispersed settlement.

Lire la suite
Lerna. M.H. Weincke (ASCSA) reports on a further study season. Further to the ongoing studies and publications reported in 2007, C14 analysis of 10 bone samples from the fills of the shaft graves is underway and conservation of the metal objects in the Lerna storeroom has begun. A conservation plan for the walls of the House of the Tiles is being developed and study for a revised site display in Argos Museum has been undertaken: the first phase comprises the creation of a digital plan of Lerna.

Lire la suite
Mycenae. S. Iakovides (ASA) reports continued excavation on the acropolis, in the lower city and in the area of Petsas House. On the acropolis, excavation of building K was completed (Fig. 1). The oblong building had on the E side 3 rooms at ground level and a staircase: a courtyard at the edge of the complex is delimited by the N Cyclopean wall. To the W of the rooms is an inclined passageway with an earthen surface, which leads into the courtyard. The rooms date to the 13th Ct BC and were built using materials from earlier structures. They remained in use for quite a short period and were destroyed ca. 1200 BC. The 2008 excavation was limited to the area of the inclined passageway, over which were 4 dressed blocks with square and round sockets for connection with other blocks, as well as a round structure built of unworked stones, associated with a few sherds and bones. The LHIIIB2 destruction level, which bore traces of fire, contained sherds, tile fragments, animal bone and many small finds (mainly fragments of wall-painting, figurines, beads, stone grinders, obsidian blades and flakes, lead and iron objects, loomweights, strainers and spools). Among these finds were a half-worked sealstone with no decoration and a clay sealing baked in the fire which destroyed the building (Fig. 2). It bears a depiction which can with difficulty be read as the Linear B ideogram for oil. Excavation continued in the lower city (Fig. 3). As in 2007, the topmost level dated to the Hel period: in the NW square, an apsidal building and remains of a potter’s workshop were found. There may have been a kiln here. Immediately S of the apsidal building was the external wall of a large building, and beneath it an orthogonal cist tomb with the skeleton of a mature individual, probably female, accompanied by 5 Geo vessels, a pin and an iron ring, all dating to the 9th Ct BC (Figs. 4-6). In the SE sector lay an apsidal building of which the 2 end walls were preserved along with the interior cross walls. The building appears to be Myc and is partially covered by Hel remains and part of a cobbled road. Various small finds were discovered, including obsidian, fragments of wall-painting, pigments, animal bones, sherds, metal objects and coins, which date to the Myc, Geo and Hel periods. The remains of historical periods are separated from those of the Myc period by a thick level of reddish-brown earth washed down from the slopes of the surrounding hills and from Mt Sara, which dominates the site of Mycenae. At the so-called Petsas House, examination of area B was completed in 2008. On its floor, which was strewn with earth and sherds, were traces of fire and burnt bricks from the super-structure which was in part wooden. The S and N walls of the room were not found, and it is suggested that the room was unroofed. Area 10 was partially investigated in 2007, with work completed in 2008. Neither the S wall nor a normal floor were found. It was filled with destruction debris, with a layer of fire debris on the bedrock. Among finds from this fill are figurine fragments and sherds of at least 6 LHIIIA2 stirrup jars similar to those found in 1950 in room A. In room T, 2 rectangular sandstone bases each had a rectangular cutting in the centre and other smaller cuttings around (Fig. 7) to accommodate wooden supports either for the roof or for an upper floor. In 2007, part of a carbonized beam was discovered in the N part of the room: in the S part are fragments of wallpainting. Finds from room T provide important information about the upper floor, which was decorated. Pithoi indicate organized storage of the commodities necessary to maintain a large household and workshops. It appears that the space was used for the manufacture, or at least the storage, of vessels and figurines. The pottery confirms that the area was destroyed towards the end of LHIIIA2. In 2007, the bases of 6 pithoi were found in Room Y, in situ on stone slabs sitting in small stones and mud. In 2008, 4 further bases were found, plus one slab without a base. Thus the room contained at least 11 pithoi. Hundreds of sherds were found in the course of the 2008 excavations in the Petsas House, plus 17 complete or restored vessels, and an abundance of small finds, mainly fragments of wall-painting. Figurine fragments were also found, as well as 2 sealstones, a piece of repoussée gold leaf, fragments of ivory and objects of stone and glass paste.

Lire la suite
Midea. The Gr-Swedish excavations on the Myc acropolis of Midea continued in 2008 under the direction of K. Demakopoulou (Director Emerita, National Museum) with the collaboration of A.-L. Schallin (Director, Swedish Institute) and N. Divari-Valakou (Γ' ΕΠΚΑ). The Gr team excavated in the SW part of the lower acropolis and the Swedish team in the area E of the east gate. The Gr team worked on the lower W terrace of the acropolis, continuing the investigation of the gallery discovered in 2007 through the thickness of the W section of the fortification wall. The entrance of the gallery in the inner face of the wall, as well as the area in front of it, were further cleared. The entrance is flanked by wall 3 and a megalithic construction. Bedrock was revealed in a large part of this area, sloping down towards the entrance to the gallery, which was accessed via steps. The interior of the gallery was investigated to a l. of ca. 3.5m with the removal of a deposit about 0.9m d, which almost reached the roof. The gallery is an underground passageway or syrinx through the fortification wall, which at this point is 5.7m thick. Its side walls are built of boulders and curve slightly inward towards the top, while the ceiling is mostly made of horizontal stone slabs (Fig. 1). The floor, of levelled bedrock, has a slight inclination with low steps at several points. The syrinx, which is 1.4m h. and 0.6m w., runs straight through the wall to the investigated length of 3.5m. At this point it seems to turn to the N and consequently to run obliquely to emerge at an exit. In order to find the exit of the syrinx, the excavation was extended outside the fortification wall. A large part of the outer face of the wall was exposed for a l. of 10m and a h. of 2.8m maximum. The wall, founded directly on bedrock, is very well preserved, built of boulders and large and medium-sized stones. The exit of the syrinx was located about 3.5m N of the axis of the entrance in the other side of the wall. It was found blocked with medium-sized and small stones, apparently by the Mycenaeans themselves. Although the exit is blocked, its corbel-vault construction is clear. The side walls of the opening curve to form a corbel arch. The dimensions of the exit, 0.6-0.8m w. and 1m h., are consistent with a secret sally port, rather than a tunnel leading down to an underground cistern. The excavated part of the syrinx contained a fill of dark stony soil. Abundant LHIIIB2 sherds were recovered. A few LHIIIC E sherds indicate that the entrance remained open in the first half of the 12th Ct BC, although the syrinx was no longer in use. Four sherds joined the LHIIIC E krater reconstructed from fragments found in the upper layers of trench C during the 2006 and 2007 excavations (Fig. 2). Part of the lower body of a Group A deep bowl decorated with antithetic spirals may be dated to LHIIIB2 L or LHIIIC E. The LHIIIB2 pottery includes mainly deep bowls of Groups A and B, stemmed bowls, cups and bowls, as well as jugs and stirrup jars. There are 2 sherds with pictorial motifs, one with a bull protome. The commonest fine plainware shapes are kylikes and dippers. There are many fragments of coarse storage and cooking vessels, such as pithoi, vats and a bowl. Fragments of large bowls of Handmade Burnished Ware and some small EMyc (LHIIA-B) sherds were recovered. Also found were some fragmentary clay human and animal figurines, notably the body of a bovid decorated with rock pattern. The other small finds from the interior of the syrinx include fragments of stone tools, such as millstones and pounders, bronze scraps including a small rivet from a knife or dagger, pieces of fluorite, mother-of-pearl and ochre, sea shells, as well as a small fragment of painted plaster. The deposits removed from the area adjacent to the outer face of the fortification wall contained a large quantity of mixed and worn sherds. These mostly date to LHIIIB2 with a few LHIIIC E and PGeo sherds. There are also many MH and EMyc sherds, as well as pottery of the LRom and Byz periods. The LHIIIB2 pottery recovered from this area includes a small stirrup jar now partly restored. Also noteworthy is a large part of a stone tripod mortar. The deposit below the floor of room I was also examined: according to the pottery found in 2007, this dates to LHIIIC E. A trench adjacent to the inner face of the fortification wall was excavated to a d. of 0.8m. The deposit removed was clearly a debris layer containing many stones fallen from the fortification wall. The fragmentary pottery from this layer is dated to LHIIIB2 L. This supports the conclusion that room I was constructed above the destruction debris caused by the earthquake that struck Midea at the end of the 13th Ct BC. The pottery from the debris layer contained many fragments of deep bowls of Groups A and B, of a small bowl with an internal pattern in added white paint, of jugs and of a miniature handmade vase. Other finds include a fragmentary clay human figurine, 2 steatite spindle-whorls and pieces of mother-of-pearl. Work continued on the conservation of ceramics from previous seasons. Huge pithoi, restored from fragments, provide evidence for the storage of agricultural products inside the acropolis. In furtherance of the project to conserve the acropolis, with the maintenance and arrangement of the N and SW part of the site, a photographic survey was made of the section of the fortification wall in this area. The work of the Swedish team concentrated on the upper plateau, SE of the east gate. Two areas E of the east gate were investigated: trench 12 and the baulk between trenches 3 and 9 (see the 2007 report for work in these trenches from 2004 onwards). Trench 12 is situated next to trench 3, along the inner face of the citadel wall, where a row of buildings was previously unearthed. The outline of the structure within the citadel wall was revealed. The first wall encountered, along the S scarp, is the continuation of that found in trench 3; it stretches towards the E and forms a right-angled corner with the other wall. The latter wall, running towards the citadel wall, is preserved to a lower level. The complete perimeter of the room partly excavated in trench 3 is now exposed. Finds comprise a majority of LH finewares and coarsewares, Myc figurine fragments, a bronze pin and 3 obsidian arrowheads. Green-glazed sherds found in a pit provide evidence of Med activity. Work was resumed between trenches 9 and 3 to clarify the architectural layout of rooms encircling the citadel wall. Most of the NW part of this baulk had been excavated down to bedrock in 2007. Work in 2008 provided evidence for a wall running E-W, which rested on bedrock and was preserved to a h. of 3 courses. The whole E part of the baulk was excavated down to bedrock. The dark brown soil (layer 2) contained pottery, bones and an obsidian arrowhead. Close to the bedrock in the SE corner of this part of the baulk, a cylinder seal of black stone was found, depicting quadrupeds and chevron filling motifs (Fig. 3). The seal most probably belongs to the LMyc Mainland Popular Group.

Lire la suite
Tiryns. J. Maran (DAI/Heidelberg) reports on the 3rd season of excavation in the W lower town. Investigation of grid squares L51 and L52 focused on the hitherto little-known occupation of the site during the pre-Myc, EMyc and EPalatial (LHIIIA) periods, as well as during the EIA. Although Pre-Myc and EMyc levels have not yet been reached, the basic course of occupation is reflected in finds appearing as earlier admixtures in later levels. Another EH sealing supplements the group of such objects already known from 2007. An unusual object of likely MBA date is a steatite stamp seal, the form and decoration of which has close parallels in Minoan seals of MMII-III date (Fig. 1). The earliest confirmed architectural remains date to LHIIIA2 and belong to a building distinguished by its relatively large size and massive wall, resembling the LHIIIA building complexes uncovered between 1969 and 1974 in the zone immediately S of the current excavation. Until now, only a segment of the S exterior wall of this new building and parts of 2 rooms with associated floors have been exposed. In refuse deposits, which had accumulated above the former ground surface in an open area outside the building, a 0.037m l. fragment of a Linear B tablet of very fine clay was found (Fig. 2). Only a short segment of one original straight edge of the tablet is preserved, whereas on all other sides the piece is broken and heavily worn. The surface shows 3 parallel lines and traces of a 4th, as well as one partially preserved sign. Although the size of the object and its bad state of preservation render it useless as a textual source, its significance lies in the fact that it comes from a chronologically homogenous context, and it is the earliest example of such a tablet in Tiryns. Still within the sub-phase LHIIIA2, the above building was replaced by the room uncovered in 2007 and interpreted as a potter’s workshop. The walls of this latest attested Myc building phase were not founded on top of those of its predecessor and were built in a different technique. It is now clear that the room, which yielded most of the unusual objects, plus installations thought to be linked to pottery production, was not a roofed space, but rather a courtyard associated with a building outside the S boundary of the excavation area. It is likely that most of the examples of painted plaster found in 2007 and 2008 had decorated the walls of this building. A Myc sealing with an unclear impression probably predates the use of the courtyard, as it came to light inside the fabric of its floor. The ceramic evidence confirmed last year’s assessment of only a minor overlap of the latest Myc building phase with LHIIIB1 and a subsequent abandonment of the area during most of LHIIIB and LHIIIC. The most significant EIA discovery is a structure interpreted as a Geo burial precinct, only partly situated inside the excavation area (Fig. 3). To the N the precinct was enclosed by a reused earlier terrace wall probably of Myc date, and to the W by a row of at least 3 large stone blocks. Cut into the N boundary wall and arranged at an approximate right angle to it, a Geo amphora lay obliquely on its belly, with its mouth toward the interior of the enclosed space. Parts of another large vessel found at its mouth probably served as a cover. Along the W side of the amphora, 2 small vessels, an undecorated trefoil-mouthed jug and a decorated skyphos, were found standing in an upright position. Linked to the deposition of the amphora is a pavement of broken limestone slabs which followed the inner side of the N boundary wall and curved in a bow outwards in front of the mouth of the amphora. The amphora was removed en bloc to allow investigation of the contents. In light of these discoveries, the possibility arises that the pavement of large limestone slabs uncovered in 2006, and first interpreted as the covering of a cist grave, served as an access to the burial precinct. In such a case we would be dealing with a very elaborate construction. A remarkable stray find from an EIA level is a golden spacer bead (0.0085m l.) consisting of 4 thin tubes of which the 2 in the middle are slightly shorter than the ones on the outside (Fig. 4). This is likely to come from a disturbed rich grave of the Geo period. In grid square L51, the uppermost part of a curved structure built with small stones began to appear. This possibly represents a PGeo house. Restoration and analysis of the large complex of wallpaintings found between 1999 and 2001 in excavations conducted by the Greek Archaeological Service in the area of the western staircase was continued in cooperation with A. Papadimitriou (Δ' ΕΠΚΑ) and U. Thaler. An intensive search for joins between the fragments led to significant progress in reconstructing fresco compositions which add to the known range of Tirynthian palatial frescoes, especially scenes linked to the religious sphere.

Lire la suite
Agia Paraskevi Arachamitai. B. Forsén (Finnish Institute) reports on work conducted in 2008. Further trial trenches were opened around the large courtyard structure and Hel stoa reported in 2007, in order to define the date and function of the courtyard structure, to gain information about the relationship between these buildings, which are differently aligned and thus perhaps of different date, and to obtain data on the pre-Hel activities currently known only through the few finds made in 2007. The plan of the monumental courtyard structure obtained from the 2007 magnetometer survey (Fig. 1) shows a series of 5m x 6m rooms around all sides of the courtyard. The survey suggested the presence of a round pit in the centre of the court, and 2 entrances in the middle of the E and W sides respectively. A trial trench (E) at the location of the possible central pit produced insufficient information to confirm the existence of a man-made feature here. A 2nd trial (F) revealed the exact location of 3 of the walls of one of the rooms flanking the courtyard. These walls are built of small unworked stones with no mortar, are ca. 0.6m w. and stand ca. 0.6-0.7m h. beneath ca. 0.2m of top soil. The room interior was covered by a 0.1-0.2m d. layer of roof tile mixed with a burned mass of red clay, possibly the remains of sun-dried bricks from the upper part of the walls. Very few finds were recorded in the layer below the collapsed roof - only some iron nails and a few non-diagnostic sherds mixed with charcoal and ash - and so the date and function of the courtyard structure remain unresolved. However, many of the roof tiles were decorated with finger strokes in the typical MRom or LRom manner, thus giving an approximate indication of date which is further supported by a C14 sample taken below the collapsed roof, which gives a date of the 3rd or 4th Ct AD. A further objective of 2008 was to determine the borders of the shallow pit filled with dark soil, large quantities of pottery and other small finds revealed in 2007. The 2007 trench (A) was extended to the S and W, revealing across its area a 0.3-0.5m d. dark layer mixed with fragments of roof tiles, large amounts of pottery (including miniature vessels), fragmentary terracotta figurines, various small finds, charcoal and ash. The layer is thicker and slightly deeper in the N towards the stoa-like structure. Sterile soil lay below this dark layer except in a small area in the N of the trench, where more dark soil mixed with large quantities of pottery, various small finds and ash continues at least to 1.7m below surface. This dark soil, most likely from a pit, differs in that it contains some large stones instead of fragmentary roof tiles. The earliest finds, made in the S part of the trench, include parts of a M5th Ct local rf vase and bg pottery of the 4th-3rd Ct BC. Most finds date to the 3rd and 2nd Cts BC, and include Megarian bowls and bronze coins. Several coins were found in the pit, including one of Kassandros, recovered at a d. of 1.55m. The composition of the finds is thus rather similar to that presented in the 2007 excavations, although with more evidence for the early phases of cult activity as well as providing a better picture of the stratigraphy of the dark soil layer.

Lire la suite
Eastern Korinthia Archaeological Survey (EKAS). T. Gregory (ASCSA/Ohio) and D. Pullen (ASCSA/Florida) report the documentation of 2 LCl-Hel towers and a rubble fortification in the immediate vicinity of Lychnari bay, E of Almyri.

Lire la suite
Mt. Lykaion, Sanctuary of Zeus. M. Petropoulos (ΛΘ' ΕΠΚΑ), M.E. Voyatzis (ASCSA/Arizona) and D.G. Romano (ASCSA/Pennsylvania) report on the 2008 season of excavation and survey (Figs. 1, 2). Excavation revealed stratigraphic sequences which probably indicate a first use of the altar in the Myc period, characterized by dozens of Myc kylikes and other small finds.  Above this  lowest level, the stratigraphy includes EIA material, as well as Geo, Ar, Cl and Hel pottery and other objects apparently in a continuous sequence.  Many miniature bronze tripods were recovered, as well as silver coins, metal objects and miniature dedications of various kinds. Numerous EH and MH sherds, as well as large amounts of FNeo, were uncovered again this year in nearly all layers of the altar.  Masses of animal bones continue to be unearthed, but no human bones have yet been found.  Part of what may be the anc. temenos wall was cleared S of the altar.  In the lower sanctuary, excavation continued immediately N and S of the seats or steps and outside the NE corner of the xenon, where considerable amounts of Hel pottery were found.  More of the 67m l. stoa building was cleared: a trench was opened to the N of the stoa to recover information from a stele that had been illicitly uncovered. Work continued to document the location of all extant stone blocks.  Architectural study focused on completion of the documentation of the steps or seats to the N of the stoa, the E wall of the xenon and the fountain house to the S and W of the xenon. G. Davis’ team continued the geological survey of the area immediately surrounding the southern peak of Mt Lykaion, defining the structural geology of the region.  Y. Pikoulas continued the historical study of the Mt Lykaion area, identifying anc. roads and towns (see also the 2008 report on Theisoa).

Lire la suite
Theisoa.  Y. Pikoulas reports on an investigation of the defensive system of Theisoa conducted under the aegis of the Mt Lykaion project, which led to the identification of at least 5 isolated patrol stations in the S part of the territory of Theisoa. These are located at Elliniaki (ca. 500m NNW of the cemetery of the village of Ano Kotilion), Pyrgouli (ca. 300m below and E of the road, 1km from the village), Alonaki (2km N of the village, immediately W of the road), Vrachos tou Vidi (almost 2.5m NNW of the village) and Gourtsoules. They likely date after the M4thCt BC, and it is argued that they formed a network controlling access to the basin of Megalopolis from the W. 

Lire la suite
Palaikastro (Gortyn).  A.-V. Karapanagiotou (ΛΘ' ΕΠΚΑ) reports on excavation of a roadside cemetery of the LCl−Hel period, on the SW slope of the hill of Skeplia or Steplia, 1km ENE of Palaiokastro, above the mod. road from Palaiokastro to Rizospelia. A monumental limestone grave stele (more than 4.5m h. and undecorated), preserved in 4 sections, has long been known from the site (fig. 3).  It is best paralleled in LCl Attica.  In the S part of the cemetery, in addition to common graves, excavation to date has revealed the following monuments along the line of the road. A rectangular structure (2.3m x 1m), of which the foundations are preserved: this is built of small and medium-sized worked limestone and local stone blocks, preserved in 2 courses to a total h. of 0.7m.  No evidence for the superstructure survives.  An empty elliptical pit was found behind and below the level of the foundations. The foundations of a funerary monument (2.6m x 1.3m; fig. 1), preserving part of the euthynteria of limestone blocks (notably the well-worked NE corner block, 1.1m l., 0.6m w. and 0.29m h., plus a further smaller such block, 0.81m x 0.41m x 0.27m). The lower faces of these blocks, which sat on bedrock, were only roughly worked, and the spaces between the blocks were packed with smaller stones.  This may be the foundation of the large stele long known from this site, or a similar such marker. A cavity 1.1m x 1.3m was cut into the bedrock inside the structure and below its foundations: this was empty, but had likely been looted.  Surface cleaning above this monument produced a bronze coin of Heraia of 370−340 BC. An elliptical pit (0.4m x 0.85m and 0.4m d.), cut into the bedrock, contained 5 bg vessels (an oinochoe, a krater, 2 skyphoi and a kantharos) of the L4th−E3rd Ct BC, carefully placed together (fig. 2).  These may relate to rituals in memory of the dead.  The pit was then covered with limestone slabs.  A further 4 LCl−EHel vessels (a krater, 2 skyphoi and a trefoil-mouthed oinochoe) were found in a similar pit, 5m to the S of the stele monument detailed above. Finally, following reports of tombs on the W slope of Skeplia, ca. 80m NW of the stele monument, 4 tombs were discovered, of which 2 have so far been excavated.  Tomb 1 is a pit grave 1.15m x 0.35m, in which only the lower part of the skeleton was preserved; among the bones was a tear bottle and, by the right tibia, a lamp, finds which date the tomb to the 2nd half of the 2nd Ct BC.  A tomb excavated to the W of the road dates to the end of the 2nd Ct BC on the basis of the grave offerings (a tear bottle and a lamp).  Tomb 4 is a cist, 2m x 0.5m, which contained an extended skeleton, head to the N, but no grave goods.   While the anc. road has eroded away in the area of the major monuments, sections of it were found to the E of these graves. The road here is 2.76m w., preserved for a l. of 6.5m and is built of pieces of the local soft bedrock, unworked slab-like stones and pot sherds.  Cleaning of this general area revealed a further 11m l. stretch running N: the road surface was not preserved here, merely the cutting for the road bed (2.55m w.) and the lower levels of fill consisting of chips from the quarrying of the bedrock. 

Lire la suite
Kakouraiika (Heraia).  A.-V. Karapanagiotou (ΛΘ' ΕΠΚΑ) is cited as reporting the discovery of 2 further Myc chamber-tomb cemeteries in the region of this village, along the E bank of the Alpheios river, close to the cemetery at Loutra Heraias reported in 2005.

Lire la suite
Andriopoulo (Agios Andreas).  In a general review of EByz remains from Arcadia, most of which have been previously reported, E. Eleutheriou (5th EBA) notes EByz sherds at this site, which lies WNW of Karytaina, on the S bank of the Alpheios river, immediately ESE of the mod. church of Ag. Andreas.  It is characterized as a probable farmstead. 

Lire la suite
Lousoi.  G. Ladstätter (Austrian Institute) reports on the 2008 excavation season, concentrated on the area of the Hel peripteral temple and the cult complex just W of it. On terrace 1, a small Hel cult structure (5.7m x 8.1m) associated with an altar has been studied since 2004. Underneath this so-called orthostat building lay the foundations of a further rectangular building (5m x 7m) of the LCl period; associated finds indicate a cult use.  Probably in the E Imperial Rom period, the orthostat building was enlarged with the addition of 2 rooms to the N and S.  Excavation in 2008 concentrated on the NE of the orthostat building and on the N hall of the enlarged phase.  The architectural remains of the altar (1.3m x 2.6m) were uncovered completely.  The altar is located 2.7m E of the orthostat building and symmetrically aligned with it. The bad state of preservation of this structure results from recent disturbance.  Two further architectural members that can, by their measurements, be ascribed to the altar lay in recent fills in its immediate vicinity. The area N of the altar yielded severely fragmented finds dating from the Cl period to the E2nd Ct BC, similarly to the adjacent cult structures. A deep sounding in the N hall of the orthostat building led to the discovery of stratified Geo material for the first time in this area: at some distance below the lower edge of the Hel foundations lay very small pottery fragments, several sherds of a cooking pot and of a large hydria; for both vessels, 8thCt BC dates are proposed. The Hel peripteral temple (15.8m x 42.35m) had a peristasis of 6 x 15 columns in its initial phase.  From E-W, the sekos consists of a pronaos, a succession of 2 large halls with internal  supports and an adyton, inaccessible from the W.  The 2008 excavations concentrated in the W hall of the sekos and the N colonnade.  In both areas, deep soundings aimed to verify the 2007 results from the E hall of the sekos concerning the pre-Hel use of the area.  It soon became clear that the 6 limestone slabs that once held supports subdividing the W hall into 3 aisles were part of the original building phase: in a situation similar to that in the E hall, the slabs rest on foundations of multiple layers of limestone blocks.  Further, these foundations cut deeply into the virtually sterile layer of green clay that was placed here to provide stable support for the monumental Hel structure. The deep sounding in the N colonnade produced the following stratigraphic sequence: underneath the clay packing into which the Hel foundations had been lowered, there is a 1m d.sequence of fills, consisting entirely of secondary deposits of Geo pottery.  Under these fills (ca. 1.6m beneath the foundation of the sekos wall) was a primary stratum containing 2 well-preserved cooking pots.  Placed carefully in the 2 vessels were a cup and a small jug.  Based on their shape, and especially on the characteristic hatched triangles on the shoulder of the jug, this eating/drinking assemblage can be dated to the Geo period (Fig. 1). In the sounding in the W sekos hall, excavation underneath the sterile clay packing supporting the Hel temple revealed a curved stone setting built of broken-up local flysch and a few pebbles (Fig. 2).  Based on its elevation, building technique and stratigraphic context, this wall can be associated with stone settings recognized in the E sekos hall during the 2007 campaign: in combination they can be reconstructed as an apsidal structure 4.5m w. x at least 7m l.  This will have to be further verified in future excavations.  The deposit of earth within the suggested apse contained fragments of a jug with typical Geo band decoration.  Based on the information currently available, the structure dates to the Geo period and is associated with the deep primary deposits under the N peristasis. Although excavations in the area of the Hel urban centre of Lousoi revealed only occasional evidence for earlier activities, this area also appears to have been in use during the Geo period. Finds so far indicate occasional activities, including eating and drinking (feasting), perhaps with a cult background and probably associated with some simple architecture.  These preliminary results suggest that at the bottom of the Soudena plain lay a further Geo settlement or cult place, complementing the Sanctuary of Artemis about 1km to the NE, which can also be traced back to the 8thCt BC.  It is further striking that in both cases there is evidence for elaborate rebuilding of the cult structures in the Hel period. 

Lire la suite
Sparta theatre.  C. Morgan (Director, BSA), A. Vasilogamvrou (Director, Ε' ΕΠΚΑ) and K. Diamanti (Director, 5th EBA) report on the first season of excavation in the anc. theatre, focusing on investigation of the extent and nature of LRom and Byz use of the space, and combining new excavation with reappraisal of BSA work in the 1920s. Excavation was conducted in the W part of the middle and upper cavea in order to locate the SW edge of the LAntique settlement on the acropolis and to establish the N limits of the housing on the W side of the orchestra, partially excavated in the 1990s (Fig. 1). Attention focused on Byz landscaping between the main settlement areas.  S of the lower retaining wall of the cavea, a substantial MByz (12thCt) terrace wall prevented erosion of the upper slope and hill-wash onto structures downslope.  This contains a quantity of architectural spolia from the theatre.  In the easternmost of the upper cavea trenches, abutting the cavea retaining wall, one of the radial paths which linked the 2 settlement areas was revealed, containing MByz pottery. In the westernmost of the upper trenches, an anomaly revealed in the 2007 resistivity survey was found to be a mass grave of the MByz period (Fig. 2).  A large pit cut into the clay fill of the theatre housed a 2.5m x 2m structure of uncoursed cobbles, with walls, containing architectural spolia, which were well faced and plastered only on the interior.  A composite lotus and acanthus capital reused within the lower wall probably originated in the upper part of the theatre (Fig. 3).  To the N and W, the construction pit was backfilled with domestic refuse, including EByz−MByz cooking and table wares, and a quantity of severely burnt roof tile of Rom type, debris of a major fire nearby.  It remains unclear whether the structure was entered from the side or from the top, and there is no evidence to show how it was covered.  The chamber contained the remains of more than 22 individuals; preliminary analysis suggests both male and female, mostly adults of a wide age range, but with a few sub-adults and at least one child of 8−10 years.  These remains were deposited in 4 episodes featuring very different practices.  The lowest level contained an ossuary-like arrangement of crania against the N wall with long bones together to the S (Fig. 4). Subsequently, a low interior wall or bench was added on the W side of the chamber and a quantity of human bone was packed behind it. Over this was an inhumation which had been heavily truncated. And finally, a large deposit of mixed semi-articulated bone with badly broken bone overlaid it. Over the entire grave interior lay a mixed deposit of pottery and animal bone. It seems that the structure was initially intended as an ossuary but was rapidly reused as a tomb.  All 4 episodes took place within the 12th−E13th Ct and were probably mostly reburials of remains originally deposited on the acropolis. There is as yet no evidence for a religious building in this area, but these unusual circumstances have a possible parallel in a multiple burial excavated in 1926 S of the theatre. Debris from the LRom and (mostly) Byz settlement on the acropolis was encountered in all the upper trenches; a little LRom pottery (3rd−6thCt), tile and brick, EByz cookware (ca. 9th−E10th Ct) and MByz (mostly 12th Ct) amphorae and tableware confirm the chronology of the main settlement phases.  A distinctive group of EByz cookpots was isolated, the earliest of which, manufactured on a slow wheel and hand finished, is tentatively dated in the L8thor 9thCt. All trenches produced pottery and votives washed down from the Sanctuary of Athena Chalkioikos on the acropolis.  Of particular interest are 2 fragments of an Ar terracotta antefix and a partially preserved stone jumping weight of the L6th−E5thCt BC with an unusually long inscription (Fig. 5).  The name of the Spartan who dedicated the weight is not preserved, and was probably on a second halter, but a victory at the Olympic Games can be restored, the athlete offering up his sporting equipment to the goddess on his return home. 

Lire la suite
Messene.  P. Themelis (ASA) reports on continuing excavation in the theatre, the Sanctuary of Isis and Sarapis, in the basilica, and in the N stoa in the agora. In the theatre area, excavation continued in the EByz cemetery reported in 2007, moving towards the Hel retaining wall of the E parodos.  Seventeen cist graves were excavated, divided into 4 groups; these were built from the worked stones of the theatre, terracotta and stone slabs.  The first group, of 5 tombs, included 4 found empty and one with the skeleton of a young woman without grave goods.  Of the other groups, one had 3 tombs, the 2nd 7 and the 3rd 2 (Fig. 1).  All were similar, contemporary constructions and contained bodies accompanied by pottery oinochoai, and dated to a later, EByz period. Particularly characteristic of these cemeteries is the peribolos which encloses them in an ordered arrangement, their separation into unitary groups with the use of common partition walls in each row to economise on space and cost, and the fact that each group was likely used for a family.  The overall appearance of the burials confirms that they were contemporary constructions. In the course of the cemetery excavation, the retaining wall of the E parodos of the theatre was also fully revealed; the E end of this is now visible, where it turns in a right angle and continues to the S.  The W retaining wall shows the same trait. The E wall is exceptionally well preserved.  It is constructed in a variant of the isodomic system with tooling on the visible surfaces of the blocks and small infillings, and in one case deviation from the verticality of the jointing (Fig. 2). In the fill between the group of 5 graves and the retaining wall was found the head of a marble statue of a woman: the face is destroyed, with only the eyes preserved.  The hairstyle copies that of statues of Faustina II.  The head was a recutting of an older statue of a man, a practice attested by other sculptures of the 4thCt AD made in a local workshop at Messene, such as the head of Hermes (Fig. 3) and that of the Emperor Constantine, which were both recut from statues of women of the Hel period. Excavation was resumed in the Sanctuary of Isis and Sarapis.  The plan was clarified of an underground Π-shaped reservoir located S of the theatre and separated from it by a road (6m w.).  The N branch of the reservoir is 46.5m l. and the E and W 35.5ml.  It is 3.25m w. and covered with an arched vault which has no openings for light.  However, one high arched opening was located, approximately in the middle of the W branch, and 4 smaller ones in the N branch.  At the end of the 4thCt AD, the reservoir, then apparently out of use and unroofed, served the inhabitants of Messene as a dump for refuse, sculpture included.  AR 50 (2003−2004), 29 reported fragments of a statue of Perseus holding the head of Medusa and a seated statue of Isis nursing Horus.  New fragments belonging to this group, from the body of Horus, were found in 2008 (Fig. 4). The right side of a head of a marble statue of a male figure of the 2nd Ct AD was also found, plus the life-sized marble head of a lioness and pieces of many marble statues. These all probably come from the theatre and the Sanctuary of Isis, and are products of local workshops at Messene, mostly of the 2ndCt AD.  They were probably broken and deposited in the disused reservoir by fanatical Christians around the end of the 4th Ct AD.  In the W branch of the reservoir were many fragments of mosaic pavements, as well as tesserae which probably came from the decoration of the Isis shrine.  The function of the underground Π-shaped structure as a reservoir was clarified by the discovery of water channels in the upper part of the walls.  The Sanctuary of Isis lay E of the reservoir, along with the remains of the basilica. On one of the architectural members of the basilica, in secondary use, was an inscription [-- ἔ]ργον  Ἴσιδος (see PAE [2001], 82). The narthex of the basilica was completely uncovered, and one monolithic column from the S colonnade re-erected with its base and capital.  Investigation outside the S nave revealed many Ch cist tombs.  A capital from the base of a bronze statue was found in secondary use: an inscription in large letters reads Ἀγαθὴ Τύχη.  Also in secondary use, as a paving stone in the central nave, was a catalogue inscription Κιστιοκόσμων Ἀθηνᾶς Κυπαρισσίας. In the N stoa of the agora, stone blocks were re-erected and conservation undertaken of the 2 counters for withdrawing and measuring solids for the agoranomeion.  On their undersides, these blocks preserved sockets and clamps for the suspension of the receptacles into which fell the solid goods being measured. The bronze head of Medusa reported in 2007 was conserved, thus confirming its form with characteristic deranged hair, crowning snakes and arresting gaze (Figs. 5-7).

Lire la suite
Ithome.  P. Themelis (ASA) reports on continued excavation at the Sanctuary of Artemis Limnatis (Fig. 1), which produced architectural members in sandstone and terracotta Corinthian-style roof tiles, as well as terracotta sima fragments with lion-head spouts (Fig. 2).   Three hundred metres NW of the Sanctuary of Artemis, at a sanctuary investigated in 1989 (AR36 [1989−1990], 33; PAE [1989], 107−10), sections of column capital, epistyle and geison of the Ionic order were found.  A 2nd line of the inscription found in the previous excavation was read, making the text: Θηρύλος ἐνικ΄Αἰθίδας | Καλαι (or Καλοις).  The excavator suggests that ἐνικα here has the sense of dedication to the Kali Thea or to the Kaloi (Daimones), i.e. to the Kouretes (Fig. 3).

Lire la suite
Anc. Thouria.  E. Greco (Director, SAIA) and P. Arapogianni (Director, ΛΗ' ΕΠΚΑ) report on a further season of research at Ellenika, anc. Thouria, focused on a sector of the anc. city located on the northernmost hill.   Three trenches were opened immediately behind the longest and best preserved stretch of the inner circuit of the city’s fortification wall.  The aim was to define more precisely the chronology of the wall, which is generally dated to the 4th Ct BC, and to reconstruct the structure and confirm the existence of an inner curtain wall.  Significant results are noted from trenches 1 and 2. In trench 1 (close to the top of the wall) there was a marked difference in findings between the N and S parts of the trench. In the S was a vault, which had been partially removed in mod. times; on the top of it, roughly worked limestone blocks were placed between, but not joined to, the arch centre.  Over this lay a compact greyish stratum with lenses of burning, within which were LCl−Hel sherds and a Cor coin of the E Imperial period. Trench 2 was placed at the foot of the curtain wall in order to confirm the relationship with the layers of fill present and the rock beneath.  Over the entire area, a uniform stratum of rather soft clay lay directly upon the rock on which the wall was founded.  In the northernmost area there emerged collapsed material which probably relates to the supports and wall super-structure; underneath it, a stratum probably formed in mod. times consisted almost exclusively of pieces of brick.

Lire la suite
Pylos.  S. Stocker (ASCSA) and J.L. Davis (Director, ASCSA) report on a further study season.  Examination of faunal remains and their archaeological contexts has now been completed.  Some 13,000 specimens, from the end of the EBA until the final destruction of the Palace of Nestor, have been studied; EMyc deposits are particularly well represented.  Study of human remains and artefacts from graves is nearly finished. LHIIIA is the principal period of use of chamber tombs associated with the palace, although there were burials in several tombs in LHIIIC. Analysis of human remains from several chamber tombs at Kato Rouga, on the SW edge of Chora, was begun in collaboration with the ΛΗ' ΕΠΚΑ.  Analysis of pottery from the pantries continued; matching fingerprints are helping to identify the products of individual potters.  Systematic study of floor-plaster from the pantries of the palace suggests that here the main building had only a single upper floor.  Plaster offering tables were inventoried.  All fragments of wall-paintings in the Chora Museum have now been digitally photographed, with mending focused on Hall 64 and Room 6; a surprising new find from the latter is a naturalistically rendered running lion.  A survey of nautilus representations (Fig. 1) reveals the stylistic diversity of this motif.  New joins were made to figures from the large-scale procession. 

Lire la suite
Triphylia.  J. Heiden (DAI) and C. Rohn (FH Wiesbaden) report on the 3rd campaign of study of anc. Triphylia.  Plans of Samikon, Platiana, Lepreon and Vrestos were made at 1:2,000 scale.  A first series of geophysical prospections, using geomagnetometry, ground-penetrating radar and resistivity, took place at Skillous and Babes.  Finds from older excavations at Samikon, Platiana, Lepreon and Vrestos (from both systematic excavation and cleaning by the Archaeological Service before 2002) were processed, and those which provide evidence for site chronology were catalogued and photographed. Samikon. The city wall (Fig. 1) and all visible architectural remains within it were recorded.  The residential architecture indicates 2 chronological phases.  In the centre, S of the agora, small isolated buildings were apparently arranged unsystematically, whereas in the E part of the city, residential houses were arranged along a rectilinear street grid.  The city appears to have been built in the E4thCt BC. Platiana. In the anc. city (Fig. 2) above mod. Platiana, the city walls, visible structures within them and a complex outside, to the SW, were recorded.  The upper town contains a theatre and several other large public buildings, as well as smaller residential houses.  These are arranged along a rectilinear street grid.  Many remains of residential houses were also found on the very steep S slope.  The upper town street grid is continuous here, despite the difficult topographic conditions. An isolated complex of buildings is located in the valley, far below the city. A tower house, built of large blocks, probably controlled the path leading up to the town.  No finds predate the L5thCt BC. Lepreon.  The 2008 campaign located the city walls and the S plateau with the Temple of Demeter.  Small rooms are integrated in the city wall almost along its entire length, as also within the wall separating the upper and lower town.  A building in the W part of the wall, recently used as an animal shelter, must have been a gate.  Besides Geo stray finds, artefacts from Lepreon include numerous Ar objects, such as pyxis lids, and many items (for example, sherds of plates, footed cups and skyphoi) of the 5th and especially the 4thCt BC). Vrestos.  Only initial fieldwork took place in 2008 at the anc. settlement near Vrestos. At this stage, there is evidence of a virtually circular city wall with several rectangular towers and a circular one in the N.

Lire la suite
Olympia. R. Senff (DAI) reports on the 2008 excavation season S of the stadium, where undisturbed anc. strata containing refuse from sacrifices and broken votives were encountered.  So far, excavation has reached 4thCt BC levels. Examination of the tower E of the Leonidaion (Fig. 1) produced a coin of Maximinus Thrax (AD 235−238) (Fig. 2) in its inner rubble fill: this is the first secure tpq for the fortification of the sanctuary’s central area.  Geophysical survey conducted in collaboration with the Ζ' ΕΠΚΑ (reported in 2007) revealed several parallel linear anomalies E of the stadium (Fig.  3). According to the location implied in anc. sources, they may belong to the hippodrome. Work was hampered by the subdivision of the area into small plots, thus producing only disconnected results.  Further studies are planned for 2009.  A new detailed architectural record of the Temple of Zeus proceeded.  X-ray examination of over 100 of the site’s most important bronze artefacts provided important information about anc. metalworking techniques. 

Lire la suite
Kyllini Harbour Project.  J. Pakkanen (Finnish Institute), K. Preka-Alexandri (Director emerita, EMA) and D. Athanasoulis (formerly 6th EBA, now Director, 25th EBA) report on a 2nd season of survey of the underwater remains of an anc. naval base and Fr harbour.  The harbour had an important geostrategic location and a tactical role in warfare and trade in W Greece from Cl antiquity to Med times, being the principal harbour of anc. Elis.  The existence of Gr harbour structures below those of the Fr period was verified in 2007 and 2008. The aim of the survey is to record all architectural features in 3D.  An area of ca. 350m x 150m has so far been surveyed, and almost 16,000 topographical points taken, mapping topographical and archaeological features (Fig. 1).  Marine geomorphological studies were undertaken by G. Papatheodorou and M. Geraga (Patras): marine surveying techniques employed include sub-bottom profiling, side-scan sonar and magnetometry.  Most walls and structures are in shallow water and relatively easy to record using a total station: points deeper than 4m were recorded by a diver. Fig. 1 presents a preliminary plan of the study area in 2007 and 2008 with a digital elevation model of the mapped features in the background.  The harbour entrance from the NE is clear: the mouth may have been blocked by the destruction of the towers on both sides of the entrance (matching literary descriptions of the destruction of the installations in 1428). Fig. 2 is a more detailed preliminary plan of the structures at the E end of the study area: the darker areas are those parts currently above sea level.  W1 is a typical Fr wall built in mixed technique employing reused ashlar blocks and rubble set in mortar. Structure S1a is a Gr platform of ashlar blocks, protected from the waves by the Fr structure S1b which is partially built on top of it.  S1a clearly indicates the rise in relative sea levels from antiquity to the present day: surfaces currently 0.6m below sea level have cuttings for iron dowels set in lead, and thus must have been out of the water in antiquity. 

Lire la suite
Aigeira. G. Ladstätter (Austrian Institute) reports on continuing excavation on the Solon terrace in the N of the so-called acropolis.  Here an extensive building, excavated since 1998, is accessed on its W side by a N-S road.  Its ground-plan and the fact that it contains several baths and banqueting rooms suggest that it was a public guesthouse.  The building was built in the LCl period and remained in continuous use until the LHel, undergoing various additions and modifications over time.  It may have had a partial secondary use in the ERom Imperial period (reported in 2007).  The 2008 excavations concentrated on the SW corner of the structure, enabling its full dimensions of 30m x 28m to be verified (Fig. 1). In spite of its poor state of preservation, the SW corner of the guesthouse can be reconstructed as a peristyle courtyard, based on 3 surviving plinths of local conglomerate, placed as the corners of a square 4m w.  This open court is surrounded on all 4 sides by halls 3.3m d.  To the E, it adjoins a roughly square ‘central room’ (6.6m x 7m), subdivided by a N-S wall into 2 roughly equal compartments.  Through a preserved door opening, this room gives access to the ensemble of antechamber and andron excavated in 2006 and 2007.  Current understanding of the structure indicates that this S axis of rooms is the result of an E3rd Ct BC modification, when the original LCl building was extended to the S. As to its later use, excavation has indicated the following advanced Hel modifications in the peristyle and central room. In the context of the creation of a small bath in the N wing of the peristyle, walls were placed between its N pillars (2002, 2003 excavations); the S pillars were probably walled up at the same time (2008 excavation).  Whether the peristyle remained an open courtyard at this time, or was roofed and integrated into the newly created complex, cannot be ascertained.  The earth deposits that abutted the walled-up S row of pillars contained copious Hel material, which was placed in the course of levelling activity in connection with the architectural modifications.  Apart from very small fragments of coarsewares and finewares, it included several substantially preserved plates, 2 small female terracotta heads, a bronze coin of Sikyon and sherds of a blue glass cup. In the ‘central room’, the floor was raised and a transverse wall placed in the E compartment, subdividing it into 2 equal-sized 3m square rooms.  The erection of this wall is contemporary with the closure of the door to the antechamber; thus, we must assume that a new, N, access to the antechamber and andron was created at that time. Similar to the evidence from the N part of the ‘central room’ (2006), in 2008 the S part was also found to contain deliberately introduced clay packings which formed the substructure for a new floor level; in some places, burnt clay floor levels had survived.  These underfloor packings contained numerous finds: apart from heavily fragmented sherds of coarsewares and finewares, there were 2 carefully deposited and fully preserved filter jugs of advanced Hel date; a similarly carefully placed deposit in the same context consisted of a largely preserved Hel plate of local clay, together with a well-preserved Hel red-slipped juglet.  It can be suggested that these vessels are connected with the symposiastic inventory of the andron to the SE.  Another interesting 2008 find from the underfloor packing consists of 2 Hel clay protomes in the shape of female figures, roughly one-third life-sized, and with outstretched arms.  Several fragments of them had already been found in 2006. Of post-Hel use in the SW corner of the building, a wall survives in the area of the original E wing of the peristyle.  This stone setting follows the orientation of the building, but its foundation is at a notably higher level than the Hel walls, and executed exclusively in conglomerate rubble. The open-plan excavation of architectural remains in the SW of the guesthouse was halted at the level of the lower edges of the Hel packings.  As already noted in 2007, underneath them is a dark earth/clay packing 0.006m d.that contains exclusively PH pottery.  A sounding in 2008 supported these results and provided numerous fragments of MNeo and LNeo vessels, and a few LMyc specimens (Fig. 2). In the context of the 2008 fieldwork, W. Gauß continued the study of finds from W. Alzinger’s 1972−1981 excavations on the plateau SE of the acropolis.  In parallel, S. Jalkotzy and E. Alram-Stern (Mycenaean Commission, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna) continued their study of the PH finds from Alzinger’s 1972−1981 excavations on the acropolis. 

Lire la suite
Iklaina.  M. Cosmopoulos (ASA) reports on excavation in the BA settlement.  In the S sector, investigation continued of the layer containing 2 floors which bore evidence of destruction by fire.  Both floors were made of pebbles and beaten earth, and covered by a layer of fire-hardened earth which contained MHIII vessels and sherds, burnt pig and ovicaprid bones, various small finds, including an anchor-shaped pendant and 2 biconical spindle-whorls, and small fragments of burnt plaster.  The 2 floors were separated by a heap of stones formed by the disintegration of wall foundations, burnt mud-brick and burnt MH coarseware. In the S sector of the excavation there were at least 2 rooms occupied during the 2nd half of the MH period and destroyed by fire at the end of that period.  This destruction was so extensive that it is impossible to define the location and direction of the walls or the plan of the rooms.  It remains unclear whether these were 2 houses or 2 rooms in the same house.  In the upper levels of both rooms were numerous LHIIIA2−LHIIIB sherds mixed with MH pottery, but there are no remains of walls to associate with them.  In 2006, a long LHIIIA2−LHIIIB wall was excavated, associated with a stone paved area of uncertain function.  Excavation of this area was extended to the E, exposing parts of 4 houses and water channels, which probably date to LHIIIA2−LHIIIB. (Fig. 1). House A has 3 rooms (Fig. 2).  Room A1 is rectangular (3.1m x 2m), oriented NW-SW and enclosed by walls α, β, γ and δ.  The S half of wall a (up to 1.5m from its S end) preserved one course of large and medium-sized stones which bear strong traces of fire.  By contrast, the N half of the wall is built of 3 horizontal rows of medium-sized stones, with no traces of fire: this part of the wall was built after the fire had destroyed the original construction.  Wall β, which is also burnt, bonds and is contemporary with the S part of wall α, while walls γ and δ, which enclose room A1 to the E and N, are of different construction and do not bear signs of fire.  The S part of the room contained a butterfly-shaped construction, of which parts of 2 burned walls survive.  The floor of the room, made of pebbles and beaten earth, was built over a foundation course averaging 0.4m d.  It is covered by a destruction layer 0.1−0.2m d., which contained fire-hardened earth (with very strong signs of fire in the S part of the floor, around the butterfly-shaped structure, but only sporadic traces in the N half), stones and burnt pig, ovicaprid and bovine bones, and numerous LHIIIA2−LHIIIB sherds.  On the floor and in contact with the N arm of the butterfly-shaped structure, a large tripod vessel was found in situ.  Room A2 lies to the E of A1, and is an irregular parallelogram in shape.  The floor is made of pebbles and beaten earth upon a foundation level as that of room A1.  The pottery from room A2 was also identical to that from A1. Room A3 lies to the N of A2 and is separated from it by wall ε.  It is a small room, perhaps used for storage; it was full of stones which had fallen from the later water channel constructed above.  House A had 2 building phases.  The earlier phase includes the S part of room A1 with the S part of wall α, wall β and the butterfly-shaped structure inside the room, all of which were destroyed by fire.  After this destruction, the room took its final form with the construction of the N extension of wall α, walls γ and δ, and the unburnt N part of the floor.  Rooms A2 and A3 belong to this same phase.  The pottery of the 2 phases does not differ significantly, and it seems that they occurred in quick succession within the LHIIIA2−LHIIIB period. House Β lies to the E of house A.  Room B1, oriented NW- SE (Fig. 3), is more recent than house A, and all its stones bear strong traces of burning.  The interior has not yet been fully excavated, but part of a floor has been located.  This floor is made of medium-sized stone slabs in beaten earth, on which lay LHIIIA2−LHIIIB sherds mixed with burnt earth and burnt animal bone.  Room B2 has an E-W l. of 5.4m; its dimension N-S is not yet established.  In the E face of wall l, a row of 5 large stones forms a large rectangular bench 0.4ml. x 0.26m d. The floor of room B2 has not been uncovered, but the pottery from inside the room includes many LHIIIA2−LHIIIB sherds and sherds from burnt kylikes. House Γ includes parts of 2 rectangular rooms oriented E-W. The E, N and S walls of room Γ1 survive, but the W wall was removed to lay down stone paving.  On the floor, made of pebbles and beaten earth, was found a large quantity of LHIIIA2−LHIIIB pottery, including sherds of 2 rhyta and stems of at least 60 kylikes, an animal figurine and a large number of animal bones.  The animal bones found in house Γ belong mainly to pigs and ovicaprids, but there were also many bones of deer, wild boar and hares, which are evidence of extensive hunting.  A set of deer antlers, on the verge of being shed naturally, indicates the animal was killed in the autumn. Finally, the discovery of a forest species of snail (Lindholmiola corcyrensis) demonstrates the existence of woodland nearby. At house Δ, part of a building with at least 2 rooms was located at the N edge of the excavation area.  Room Δ1 was long and narrow (1.3m internal w.) and oriented N-S; the E-W dimension has not been established since the E part has yet to be excavated.  An opening 0.5m w between the S end of wall γ and wall β of house Γ forms the entrance to the building from an exterior space, probably a courtyard, which opens to the W and leads to a paved area.  Room Δ2 was destroyed by the laying down of the paving and only 2 walls are preserved. Built water channels were placed between houses Β and Γ; these run E-SE and join the paved area in the W.  Channel 1 is the largest; it is covered by 14 large slabs, set in a straight line which follows the slope.  At the W end of the channel, by the final cover slab, is a hole 0.1m di.and 0.22m d., filled with very fine gravel, which probably held a post to support the roof. From channel 2, only the channel itself and the cover slabs by the outflow are preserved.  It lies 1.4m from channel 1 and curves from SE to NW.  The NE corner of wall ζ of room A3 was removed for the construction of the outflow of the channel. The walls of the channel outflows are built of upright slabs supported by smaller stones.  They are filled with clayey earth and a very few undatable sherds.  The outflows of the 2 channels come together at the NE edge of the paved area. A burial was found W of the long wall, at a d.of barely 0.4m below the mod. ground surface.  Only the cranium, parts of the right arm and 2 spinal discs were excavated: a 12/15-year-old female, buried in an upright, contracted position, with the head markedly pushed down towards the chest and the right hand below the jaw.  The young woman suffered from porous lesions on the right eye socket and porotic hyperostosis in the cranial vault.  While the precise factors behind this case cannot be determined, these symptoms are generally associated with anaemia, which can be genetic, a result of lack of iron in the diet or of internal haemorrage caused by parasites. Additionally, the 3rd molars show excess enamel, something which is also present on the crowns of the canines and incisors. This feature indicates illness or bodily harm one or 2 years before death. The head rested on the neck and rim of a MH storage vessel. The results of excavation so far indicate that the settlement was first occupied in the 2nd half of the MH period, and was destroyed by fire at the end of that period.  The site was reoccupied in LHII−LHIIIA1, as shown by the walls found at the deepest points in house B (walls λ and μ) and house G (walls δ and ε).  Thereafter, in the LHIIIA2−LHIIIB period, the oldest part of house A was built (the S part of room A1, with the S part of wall α, wall β and the butterfly-shaped structure).  Room A1 was destroyed by fire during this same period but was soon reused and extended to the N, with the additions to wall α and wall β, while rooms A2 and A3 were added to the house and wall hwas built.  The next phase, which also dates to LHIIIA2−LHIIIB, encompasses houses B, Γ and Δ, the water channels and the paved area, which co-existed with rooms A1 and A2. The latest architectural feature to appear is the long wall, which was built at a higher level than wall δ of room A1 and above the paved area.  The settlement was finally destroyed by fire during LHIIIB, as is clear from burnt pottery in the destruction layer.

Lire la suite
Profitis Ilias, Mamousia Aigialeias (anc. Keryneia). E. Kolia (Στ' ΕΠΚΑ) reports on systematic excavations conducted at this Ar−Cl sanctuary since 2004. The colonnade of a large Doric temple (36.4m x 15.6m) of the end of the 6thCt was revealed, along with an altar to the E. W of the Ar temple was a smaller temple (13.3m x 8.7m) of the 4thCt BC (Fig. 1).  In 2008, a layer was excavated NW of the small temple which contained stone chips, sherds and fragmentary architectural members from the Ar temple (Fig. 2).  Fragments of pedimental sculpture were found, as well as pottery, figurines, metal items (phialai, rings and handles from large vessels) and a silver knob from a vessel (perhaps a pyxis).  The finds date mostly to the 6th and 5thCt, and were placed at this spot after the destruction of the large temple in the 4thCt. Under this layer was a wall of sandstone blocks, oriented N-S and preserved to the height of one course.  (Fig. 3). This wall is 3.11m l. and 0.8−0.96m w., and is likely part of the Ar peribolos of the sanctuary. 

Lire la suite
Trapeza (Aigion).  A. Vordos (Στ' ΕΠΚΑ) reports on 2 seasons of excavation, in 2007 and 2008 (following trials conducted in 1999 and 2000), of a Doric temple (31.56m x 16.72m) dating from the last quarter of the 6thCt BC (ca. 530−510).  The krepis and superstructure are of grey sandstone, and the large quantity of architectural members preserved (column drums and capitals, geison and epistyle blocks etc.) allows a secure reconstruction of the building.  A quantity of architectural terracottas was found (simas, pedimental geison fragments etc.) on which the paint is very well preserved, as well as fragments of sculpture, also of sandstone, belonging to the W pediment (and found together immediately outside the W front of the temple). These include the torso of a figure of Athena (wearing a sleeved chiton and himation, and with her aegis), fragments of the bodies and helmeted heads of warriors, and heads, legs and trappings of horses. This combination likely indicates that the subject of the pedimental group was a gigantomachy.  While the base of the cult statue has been found in situ in the cella, there is no evidence as yet for the statue or for the identity of the deity worshipped.  Surface prospection in the surrounding area has revealed walls, indicating that the temple was situated within a settlement area.  The archaeological site has now been roofed. 

Lire la suite
Gremoulias.  G. Ladstätter (Austrian Institute) and G. Alexopoulou (Στ' ΕΠΚΑ) report on continuing collaborative excavations on the Gremoulias saddle, 3.5km SE of Kalavryta. Since 2005, several soundings on the small plateau have gradually revealed a Doric peripteral temple.  The substructure of the peristasis is almost entirely preserved in situ, and several limestone architectural members have been found, some still positioned as they had fallen.  Above a euthynteria of 13.9m x 34.75m, a colonnade of 6 x 14 can be reconstructed.  The architectural members (and particularly the shape of the Doric capitals) indicate that this limestone temple was built no earlier than the 4thCt BC.  In 2007, a parallel foundation was discovered 10.2m E of the temple; its superstructure had fallen to the W. Blocks, parts of column shafts and capitals of crystalline limestone can be ascribed to a monumental Doric structure of the L6thCt BC and were reused as spolia (reported in 2007). The 2008 excavation concentrated on the LCl limestone temple and the structures to its E.  In the W part of the temple, for the first time, the substructure of the sekos was exposed, as was part of the foundation of the S peristasis (Fig. 1). The fully preserved toichobate in the SW corner of the sekos is made of limestone slabs of varying sizes, laid on the ground without any foundation.  In the carefully smoothed top surface, mortises for the blocks of the wall above it have survived in places.  Based on their axial orientation, the stone settings found in the N-S section in 2005 also belong to the sekos. Thus, the relationship between sekos and peristasis in the building plan can be reconstructed as follows. The sekos had an outer w. of 6.6m and an internal w. of ca. 4.5m.  This sekos, set symmetrically within the peristasis, is clearly narrower than the calculated position of the 2nd and 4th columns on the W façade (axial distance 7.5m). Therefore, the W limit of the sekos should be assumed to have been a closed wall, not an opisthodomos harmonizing with the peristasis.  This is further supported by the fact that within the 6.5m stretch of the W part of the sekos that was excavated, no internal traverse wall was detected: the sekos did not contain a separate W room. Generally, the ground-plan of the limestone temple, with its elongated peristasis of 6 x 14 columns and its strikingly narrow sekos, suggests LAr features, as known, for example, at the Temple of Athena at Alipheira.  In this context, one should also note the numerous limestone architectural elements of the LAr Doric order that had been built into the wall E of the temple.  It is more than likely that they belonged to a LAr peripteral temple, the ground-plan of which was reused for the LCl temple. To the E of the temple foundations, excavation was extended southwards in 2 soundings.  This led to the discovery of the continuation of the N-S foundation.  The rock, cut away to allow the placing of this foundation, has a right-angled W turn in the S, and exactly on that E-W axis, another limestone slab still rests in situ.  In all likelihood the 2 in situ limestone slabs discovered in 2007 belong to a W foundation. Contrary to the initial 2007 interpretation of the remains as a supporting wall, it can now be assumed that they are part of a small-scale architectural structure measuring 4m by at least 7m and placed in axial symmetry 6.6m in front of the limestone temple. Probably, this is the altar of the sanctuary (Fig. 2). In 2008 as in 2007, several LAr architectural members made of limestone were discovered as they had fallen from the structure in which they were in secondary use. They include blocks, numerous fragments of Doric columns, one shaft surviving to a l. of 2.05m and a Doric capital fragment. It is noteworthy that the entire area of the altar so far excavated was characterized by a packing of dark burnt earth. Besides a few fragmented bones and scarce small chips of pottery, this area contained finds suggesting votive activity: the assemblage included an Ar female head with polos, a clay pigeon and numerous iron lance or spear points.  A Geo bronze bull/cow was found, albeit in a secondary deposit, at the S peristasis of the limestone temple. Although the deity to whom this sanctuary was dedicated cannot yet be clearly identified, it can be assumed that the sanctuary on the Gremoulias saddle was already established in the Geo period.  According to the results so far, a limestone peripteral temple was erected in the LAr period, marking the monumentalization of the sanctuary. For reasons that remain unclear, a new peripteral temple was erected, with direct reference to the original plan, in the LCl period; probably at the same time, an altar was built to its E, using numerous spolia from the old temple.

Lire la suite
Argos, Aspis. G. Touchais (EfA/Paris 1) and A. Philippa-Touchais (EfA) report on the 2008 campaign. The MH walls of the central area of house O were consolidated and cleaning was undertaken in various parts of the site (Fig. 1). Preliminary study of the pottery and human bone remains recovered from the 2007 cleaning in the area of Vollgraff’s excavation shows that the 3 skeletons uncovered belong to a (probably male) adolescent 16/17 years old, a newborn baby suffering from congenital anaemia and an 8/9-year-old child. At the request of the Δ' ΕΠΚΑ and the municipality of Argos, a project was developed to assess the Cl-Hel remains on the hill of Profitis Ilias, the Myc cemetery on the Deiras and the Sanctuary of Apollo Deiradiotis, with a view to creating an archaeological park for the better protection and display of the antiquities and to enhance the environment of the city of Argos. Argos, Nannopoulos plot. A. Pariente (EfA/Lyon) and C. Piteros (Δ' ΕΠΚΑ) report on the 6th excavation campaign in this area, focused on the structures of the agora. Thirty six further tombs were excavated, mostly dug into the fill associated with the general abandonment of the anc. agora. Twenty held the remains of adults, 12 the remains of children and 2 those of babies. Two had primary burials plus the remains of a secondary burial, and one grave contained the double burial of an adult and a child (Fig. 2). All were pit graves possibly covered with planks of wood. In the almost complete absence of grave goods, the burials could not be dated; the exception is a double burial where a tpq is provided by the fact that the bottom of the pit rests on what is probably a Byz road. Excavation of the E part of the monumental exedra continued. Of particular interest is the junction between the foundation still in place and the collapsed remains of the seating, buried in fill in which the latest items date to the 6th and 7th Cts AD (Fig. 3). This impressive collection of blocks from the lowest level of the exedra resulted from sudden and uniform collapse, as indicated by the marked angle of the edges of the disturbance. In total, 12 blocks have been revealed from 3 foundations for the seating (limestone foundations, interior and exterior steps placed side by side, and a limestone bench) lying in the same relative order which they occupied within the structure itself. The causes of this massive collapse remain to be investigated. The fact that the blocks are intact indicates that the lowest level of the exedra had suffered no previous destruction before this collapse.

Lire la suite
Epidauros. V. Lambrinoudakis (President of the Committee for the Conservation of the Monuments of Epidauros) reports excavation of the N parodos and part of the koilon of the little theatre. Continuing study of the ca. 1,000 inscriptions from the theatre by S. Petrounakos is noted, with particular reference to those on ca. 252 4th Ct figurines, all of which were inscribed by their dedicators.

Lire la suite
Franchthi Cave. K.D. Vitelli (ASCSA) reports on continuing study and analytical programmes. Study of the Pal and Mes ornaments was completed, focusing on those made from Columbella rustica. Study of the Neo material was begun, revealing abundant shell ornaments which change the overall picture of Neo ornaments. The Initial Neo and ENeo are dominated by Columbella and Cyclope beads, which establish an element of continuity with the Mes. In parallel, more ‘typical’ Neo ornaments, i.e. geometric beads and pendants, appear as early as the Initial Neo. The rate of change, both in terms of the composition of the ornaments and the techniques of production, is considerably higher in the Neo than the Pal and Mes periods. Faunal analysis continued to focus on trench H1-B: analysis of material from periods 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 2, 3 and 4 is now complete. Taxonomic abundance at Franchthi Cave is unusual in several respects, and provides important information about the anc. environment and subsistence. First, in all periods except period 2, small game taxa (birds, small mammals and reptiles) outnumber ungulates in absolute abundance. In period 2, the numbers of ungulate and small game specimens are more or less equal. Although small game have been shown to be an important part of LPal economies, at Franchthi they are interesting for their early appearance, their consistency across the sequence and their sheer numbers. Despite relative stability in the representation of small game versus ungulate taxa, there is substantial taxonomic change within the small game and ungulate categories themselves. In the early part of the sequence, wild ass (Equus hydrantinus) dominates the ungulate assemblage. However, red deer (Cervus elaphus) steadily increase in number until they surpass the equids in period 3. Wild boar (Sus scrofa), wild goat (Capra aegagrus) and aurochs (Bos primigenius) never play more than distinctly secondary roles. The small game assemblage is comprised primarily of hare (Lepus europaeus) and birds (namely partridge and pigeon). The exception is a pronounced peak in period 3, when fish (primarily gilthead sea bream; Sparus aurata) become the most common taxonomic group in the assemblage. This peak is all the more pronounced given that fish are virtually absent from the sequence until period 2 when they comprise less than 15% of small game taxa. They return to this same low frequency in period 4.

Lire la suite
Eua (Loukou). Villa of Herodes Atticus. One of the 10 tribal casualty stelai set up over the Athenian dead at Marathon has been discovered. The stele had been taken to decorate the Villa of Herodes Atticus along with a number of sculptures and other antiquities. The stele bears an epigram, and lists 22 names of the dead of the tribe Erechtheis.

Lire la suite
Gourtsouli (anc. Mantineia). Th. Karagiorga-Stathakopoulou presents a synthetic account of the results of excavations conducted in 1962 and 1989-1990, with extensive illustration and discussion of the largely unpublished portable finds from the Ar shrine (which was established, after a post-BA hiatus, towards the end of the 8th Ct BC).

Lire la suite
Property of Vr. Leopoulou (O.T. 127). K. Diamanti (5th EBA) reports the discovery in the course of rescue excavation in 2008 of the surface of a road leading to the acropolis, a road which probably formed part of the dense Roman road network to the south of the acropolis. A potter’s kiln, round in section, dates to the third to early fourth century AD, earlier than the road, on the basis of the portable finds (pottery, glass and metal). It probably belonged to a roadside workshop.

Lire la suite
Property of N. Panoutsakou (O.T. 127). K. Diamanti (5th EBA) reports on rescue excavation begun in 2006 and completed in 2008. Architectural remains include walls forming an orthogonal building with a doorway, and water channels, tombs (on the same northwest-southeast orientation as the church a few metres to the east), a floor mosaic, a silo, and a mortar floor. In the west part of the plot, successive building phases date to the Roman and Late Roman periods, while in the east they date to the Byzantine period although they cannot be associated specifically with the Middle Byzantine church on the Rigou plot. Property of G. Kalopisi (O.T. 127). Rescue excavation in 2009 and 2010 revealed a system of Late Roman water channels and a floor mosaic which is likely a continuation of that on the neighbouring Panoutsakou plot.

Lire la suite
Delpriza (Kranidi). A. Kossyva reports the discovery by the Δ’ ΕΠΚΑ of part of a Classical (fifth- and fourth-century) cemetery on the eastern slope of a low hill, 700m south of Koilada bay. The cemetery must belong to a rural community in a fertile area near the coastal town of Mases. A rural workshop with a stone oil press further north on the same hill is provisionally dated to the fourth to third century BC. The 43 graves excavated extended in at least three rows over two artificial terraces, with a general north-south orientation regardless of type. Certain pit graves were set in close proximity to each other, likely reflecting a social group. They generally contained single burials, exceptions being two tile graves with two, and cist grave 39 with two superimposed burials and the bones of a third at their feet. Three infant graves were identified by their small size (only parts of the skulls were preserved). There was no surviving evidence for grave markers. Most graves (25) are elliptical pits, two of which were covered with rough stones. There were 11 tile graves - elliptical pits in which the body was surrounded by and covered with Classical Laconian tiles, two of which had workshop marks. Child grave 4 had a tiled floor. Four cist graves lay in the north of the excavated area. Three were lined with worked or rough local limestone while the fourth had tiles set vertically along the long sides and worked limestone along the short: grave 1 was covered with stone slabs. Two simple burials were also found.  At least 38 adults and four infants are currently identified. The deceased were deposited directly on the earthen grave floor, mostly laid supine and extended.  One body in grave 12, on its left side in contracted position, was probably moved to accommodate an infant burial (possibly a successive or contemporaneous burial of a mother and child). In most (22) cases the head lay to the south.   Only eight graves contained offerings as follows:  Cist grave 1: two iron pins at the right shoulder and a bronze ring. Cist grave 39: an iron pin. Tile grave 9: a silver Aeginetan obol. Tile grave 17: a second half fifth-century Attic black-glaze skyphos of Corinthian type. Grave 8: two kylikes (an Attic import and a local Droop cup) and an Attic Group 581, I lekythos with a Dionysiac scene, dating to 480–470. Grave 26: an iron fibula was found near the left arm of the deceased.  Pit grave 23: two fifth-century miniature Corinthian kotylai and a spoon. Grave 10: a small Classical Corinthian jug and an iron pin. A local fifth-century skyphos may belong to grave 17 or grave 18.    An Early Helladic grave in the south part of the cemetery consists of an elliptical cutting in the bedrock, lined on three sides with at least three courses of unworked limestone boulders, and with a large stone jamb at the entrance on the east side. Immediately east of the door, a prothyron, or porch was indicated by a shallow formation in the bedrock. The grave superstructure is not preserved. Inside the tomb were piles of human bones and skulls in successive layers: the upper layers covered the whole grave while the lower were confined in the west, opposite the entrance. At least 30 individuals are represented, initially laid in contracted position: the skulls were then placed around the edge of the tomb and the remaining bones piled in the centre. Offerings comprise obsidian blades, stone beads, 10 EH I vases and an EC I marble figurine akin to the Plastiras Group. The vases (some of which were intact) were mainly hand-made spherical pyxides with dark burnish or red paint, and incised decoration, plus a pyxis lid and a fragmentary double vase with red paint. They show many similarities with EC I pottery, mainly with the Kampos Group, and are not local products. Evidence of contemporary activity over some 690 m2 in the immediate area of the tomb cannot yet be characterised (as related to settlement or only burial). 

Lire la suite
Argos, Herakleous Street (properties of A. Koutroubi and K. Theodoropoulou). The Δ’ ΕΠΚΑ reports the discovery of building remains of many periods on two plots close to the southeast slope of the Profitis Ilias hill. Hellenistic (fourth- to third-century) remains include stone house walls houses, three dumps of domestic pottery, and three cremation burials.  A built cist tomb used for more than one burial, and two enchytrismoi (without accompanying goods) in a krater with upswung handles and a pithos, show the use of the area for burial in Geometric and Archaic times. Middle Helladic and Mycenaean remains comprise multi-room stone-walled houses, an oval clay hearth, and a stone-paved area. (Figs 1-2). Within this settlement were two built cist tombs, one of which contained an LH IA alabastron.   

Lire la suite
Dimitsana, anc. Teuthis (property of G. Petropoulou). The ΛΘ’ ΕΠΚΑ reports the discovery during rescue excavation of part of the foundation of the fortification wall of ancient Teuthis (figs. 1-2).The wall had two construction phases: the first, in the fifth century, was in pseudo-polygonal style, and the second, in the polygonal style, is dated on stylistic grounds to the late Classical or Early Hellenistic period. The only surviving tower belongs to this second phase.  

Lire la suite
Leondari. D. Athanasoulis (Director, 25th EBA) reports on excavation conducted on the medieval kastro after the fires of summer 2007 cleared vegetation. Investigation focused on the Byzantine churches of Ag. Basileios and Ag. Kyriaki and an anonymous church, and the approach road and gate in the upper defensive circuit.  On the summit, in the internal circuit where important medieval structures (such as the large cistern) were concentrated, a 3m-wide gate was revealed, with a pavement and steps at intervals (fig. 1). The ruined church of Ag. Kyriaki lies on the west slope just below the summit (fig. 2). Part of the west wall is preserved, articulated on the interior by two pilasters akin to the wall columns of tripartite churches. Even though the form of the church is at present unknown, the internal configuration suggests a tripartite arrangement of the space. The three apses were three-sided and a single step separated the sanctuary from the nave. A low built bench ran around the sides of the nave, and the floor was paved in limestone.  The main approach to the church was directed to the north wall. An underground vaulted chamber was found outside the southern part of the west wall, in contact with it. On the north side was a later vaulted extension as wide as the church and with entrances to the north and west. As in the nave, a built bench ran round the south, east, and part of the north wall of the extension, and the floor was made of off-white plaster. Below it were three vaulted tombs/ossuaries, full of bones, accessed via openings close to the exterior wall of the extension. The walls of the church and the exonarthex were built of undressed stone and cement, with worked blocks at the corners, and pieces of brick and tile set into the joints, strengthened with tie-beams (fig. 3).  

Lire la suite
Ancient Corinth, Loutsa (Lazarou-Angelou property). The ΛΖ’ ΕΠΚΑ reports the discovery of a Roman kiln and, to the north, 38 Archaic-Hellenistic tombs. The tombs did not follow a consistent orientation and not all contained grave goods. Typical offerings consisted of lekythoi, aryballoi, oinochoae, skyphoi, miniature vases, gold leaf, and bronze earrings. Simple pit graves, pits with tile covers, and sarcophagoi were all represented.   

Lire la suite
Aipeia, Panagitsa (anc. Thouria). The ΛΗ’ΕΠΚΑ reports the discovery of a retaining wall on the western slopes of the Hellinikon hill, and of many architectural members reused in the neighbouring small chapel of the Panagia. Subsequent excavation revealed two retaining walls and a monumental, probably public, building of the Classical period (fig.1) on the terrace created. The building was oriented east-west, built of isodomic dress limestone masonry (fig. 2), and was destroyed by fire (a thick ash layer was found beneath the  roof collapse). A single burnt terracotta relief plaque depicting an armed Athena is the sole indication that the building may have been a temple. The second, north-south, retaining wall, built in careful isodomic masonry (fig. 3), has the remains of steps to the upper terrace and the monumental building at its north end (fig. 4). Part of an ionic colonnade was found on the lower terrace with three columns and a door jamb in situ, as well as a doric building with the floor preserved within which a stone ‘treasure box’ was found in situ. North of the acropolis, the site of the city cemetery, a funerary monument contained three funerary receptacles with Early Hellenistic grave goods, noting in particular an exaleiptron with relief decoration (fig. 5).  

Lire la suite
Kanalos Tryphilias. The ΛH’ ΕΠΚΑ reports on excavation at a site which had produced surface remains of the prehistoric to Roman periods. A cemetery of completely looted pit graves was found, plus remains of a Middle Helladic fortification and buildings which continued in use in Mycenaean times.  

Lire la suite
Palaia Loutra, Drosia. The 26th EBA report on trial excavation following the discovery of the remains of a church (the sanctuary apse, parts of the side walls and two sections of spiral column).  (fig. 1)   Excavation southwest of the apse revealed its southwest edge and the south wall of the church, inside which was a pilaster 1.14m from the angle with the apse.  In contact with the south wall was a tomb (1) covered with large stone slabs and cement (figs 2-3), which contained multiple burials but very few grave goods (a small closed vessel and a silver hook, fig. 4). At the south end of the apse part of the east wall was uncovered, bearing on the inner face plaster with a decorative pattern of trowelling (fig. 5) identical to that inside the apse (confirming that the two features belong to the same construction phase, noting that the monument as a whole shows more than one phase). A section of wallpainting was also found on the interior face of the south wall, on the west side of a pilaster (fig. 6). It depicts (fig. 7) the lower part of a figure, probably a saint (the sandalled feet and white robe are preserved), with a zone of geometric decoration beneath (with zigzag and marbelling). The same zone is also preserved on the north side of the apse.

Lire la suite
Klenia Cave, Kalyvakia.  D. Hatziangelou (Ioannina) presents a study of the cave, which lies 10km from the village of Klenia on the northwest slopes of Mt Stephani, immediately below the peak of Prophitis Ilias Vortopou, in a location with clear views to neighbouring mountains and plains. The site was surveyed in the 1920s by the honorary Ephor of Antiquities for the Argolid and Corinth, Nikolaos Bertos, who conducted limited excavations in 1930, 1939 and 1940 (of which almost all records are lost). His trenches remain visible to the left of the cave entrance. Over 6,000 sherds of the Late Neolithic to Late Byzantine and Ottoman periods found by Bertos attest to near continuous use for occupation and cult. In an unpublished report by the late Bill Phelps, these sherds are characterised as follows. Neolithic pottery comprises ca. 40% of the material, consisting of black burnished, burnished, matt painted, grey and urnfinis wares. Domestic, cooking and storage vessels are represented. While Early Helladic is not present, Middle Helladic (including black and grey Minyan) is well represented. Mycenaean kylikes and Archaic (seventh- and sixth-century) bowls and kylikes are reported. Sixth-century BC figurines and votive pottery indicate cult practice. In modern times the cave has been intensively used by shepherds and for cheese manufacture. A new topographical and geological survey was completed in 2006 in collaboration with the EPSNE. The cave is entered at the northeast (entrance 6m wide and max. 3m high) and has three large chambers. Chamber 1 (10 x 20m, 4m max. height) has clear evidence of human activity, notably the cutting of stalagtites and stalagmites to create small tables and storage areas (with strong burning indicating the use of certain areas for lamps and torches). A statue base 0.7m high and 1m in diameter with cuttings on the top face, created from a stalagtite or stalagmite, was found beneath a thick layer of more recent debris. The second chamber (23 x 12m) is entered via two passageways from the first (it lies 1.5-3m deeper). The third chamber (35 x 2-5m) can only be entered via a very restricted passage from the second: a large quantity of human bone lay in this passage (at least five crania and 20 pairs of thigh bones), probably including the remains of Ottoman soldiers killed in combat with Dramalis' forces in 1822. At the rear of this chamber, natural reservoirs were fed from within the cave.  A large quantity of sherds was visible throughout the complex, along with extensive disturbanvce from illegal excavation and modern use. In a further study, S. Oikonomides considers Neolithic evidence from the cave and its environs in its wider regional context. On the plain above, prospection in 2007 and 2008 revealed scattered Neolithic sherds, and a further cave. These remains lie on a path evidently known since the fourth millennium BC. 

Lire la suite
Derveni. D. Sarri (ΛΖ’ ΕΠΚΑ) reports the discovery of an Early Helladic settlement in the course of construction of supporting bank for the Kiato-Patras stretch of the new Corinth-Patras railway (fig. 1).  The sites lie barely 120m to the east of a Late Roman settlement revealed in the same works (2497), in the area of the Spyrouleiko ravine by the motorway junction. An area 43 x 4m was excavated. Walls defined small rooms (none of which has yet been completely exposed). Built of unworked stones of varying sizes, with two faces and a fill of smaller stones, they were generally preserved to a height of four courses (0.7m), although excavation is not yet complete.  The largest room is ca. 4.8 x 2.3-2.5m (the south side is unexcavated), with a doorway on the west side preserving a stone hinge block for a probably wooden door: the room contained sherds of large pithoi. Ca. 0.8m to the north, most of a large pithos decorated with two impressed ‘rope’ bands was found in situ (similar decoration was also found on other sherds). Preliminary examination of the pottery suggests that it was not wheel-made. Vessel shapes represented are bowls, plates and typical Early Helladic bird-shaped ‘saltcellars’ (which have close parallels for form and fabric in ancient Corinth). Many sherds have red, light brown or grey-black slip: different fabrics are represented, from a reddish fabric with many inclusions, to the very fine fabric used for thin-walled vessels. Other finds include a round pyxis and three conical spindle whorls. A notable quantity of Melian obsidian was recovered, mostly blades (over 50, plus two flint blades). The use of bronze and lead is also attested. Further walls, differently oriented, beneath these, confirm earlier settlement yet to be investigated.

Lire la suite
Ancient Sikyon. Ph. Balla (Athens) publishes a part of the Hellenistic (post 303 BC) city cemetery excavated on the coastal plain in 1966 at the 21.614km stage of the Corinth-Patras motorway, then under construction. Thirty-three tombs were excavated (20 of which were simple cist containing single inhumations and dating to the second and first centuries BC), plus a displaced burial, an enchytrismos, and a pyre. A Π-shaped funerary monument (built in the mid third century) consisted of an open ‘court’ defined by isodomic walls preserved to four courses (at the level of the krepis, estimated at 7.8 x 4.35m). The superstructure is not preserved. Inside, a tomb structure (4 x 3.6m) built onto the rear wall was divided into two burial compartments which held the burials of at least five individuals dating from the late third to the last quarter of the first century BC (plus displaced bones from older burials). Beneath this, two chambers defined by the walls of the monument also contained burials. Two successive graves were found in the west compartment of the tomb structure. The older (AX) a stone larnax covered with two slabs, contained two inhumations. The first was accompanied by a stone vessel, two lagynoi, an unguentarium, lamp, pyxis, phiale, two Lydian amphoriskoi (all of late third- to second-century date), and metal items (a needle, ring, mirror disc, lead aryballos, earring, lance or arrowhead, and an iron dagger): the second held a frying pan, carbonised material round the cranium, and nails probably from a wooden bier. An iron strigil, a phiale, and 32 astragaloi cannot be ascribed to either individual. The overlying tile grave (AVI) had two use phases: the lower contained many scattered cranial and bone fragments, a small bowl, an unguentarium, and bronze fragments.  The upper contained a single inhumation with a late second- to early first-century globular vessel, fragments of a bronze object, and much carbonised material along the east side of the tomb. In the east compartment, grave AVII (second half third- to second-century) contained one inhumation with two lagynoi, a lopas, an unguentarium two Lydian amphoriskoi, a bowl, a pyxis and lid, a lamp and a strigil. To the west of the tomb structure lay a late fourth- to early third-century pyre with vases, bronze sheet, gilded terracotta beads and a bronze coin of Sikyon (a full account of the pyre and the vase types represented in published by K. Krystalli-Votsi alongside Ph. Balla’s report). South of the pyre and west of the funerary monument were two stone-built cist graves with stone cover slabs (AXI and AXXI); one held a strigil and a coin. Grave AXI contained an extended inhumation with a phiale, small skyphos, lamp, two amphoriskoi and a strigil. Tomb AXXI, immediately to the west contained an inhumation with two amphoriskoi, two pyxides, two lamps, an unguentarium, a small kotyle and bronze fragments. To the east of the tomb structure, a third cist grave (AIX) contained an inhumation with a lekanis and lid, a lidded pyxis, two amphoriskoi, four lamps, a lopas and a miniature vase. These three graves were contemporary with each other and with the pyre, but earlier than those inside the tomb structure (they were preserved when the structure was built). South of the funerary monument, part of an ancient road ran east-west, with wall foundations and a covered stone water channel. At least two building phases predated the funerary monument. West of the monument, in 3.5 x 3m area between the west retaining wall of the monument and a further wall, was a cist tomb, a displaced burial, and nine simple cists cut into the bedrock (in six cases covered with tiles). All contained single inhumations in extended position unless otherwise noted. AV, a tile-covered rock-cut cist of the end of the second – early first century, contained an inhumation in squatting position, plus a lidded chytra, two unguentaria, a kyathos, phiale, relief bowl, a bone pin, and six female terracotta figurines. To the north, the second-century BC displaced burial AXII had three crania among the bone, a phiale and small bowl, an unguentarium, two lamps, a pyxis lid, and two kalpis/hydriae. The tile-covered rock-cut grave AXIII lay below AXII, and contained two unguentaria, a pyxis lid, a lamp and a coin. The second-century graves XIII and XV should probably be considered together as the tomb of a single individual, with a lidded pyxis, miniature phiale, one–handled bowl, Lydian amphoriskos, lamp, miniature vessel, and a bronze fragment.  One metre west of the monument lay the cist grave AXIV (covered with tile and limestone slabs), with second-century grave goods comprising three lachrymateria, two amphoriskoi, a lidded lekanis, lamp, skyphos, canteen, and lopas, a bronze nail, strigil and bronze fragment. Rock-cut cist AXVII, which lacked a cover, was just west of AXIV. It contained a Lydian amphoriskos, a lopas, lamp, one further vessel, and a strigil.  Beneath this tomb lay the rock-cut cist AXVIII (missing a cover), with a lopas, two Lydian amphoriskoi, four lamps, a pyxis, small bowl, chytra, lagynus, and unguentarium, all of the first half of the second century. A further rock-cut cist AXX lay beneath AXVIII, and contained a lidded chytra, two lamps and a lopas. West of grave AXIV lay the rock-cut tile-covered cist AXVI (noting the re-use of a painted tile among the covertiles) with a kalpis/hydria over the cover, and an unguentarium, two miniature Lydian amphoriskoi, seven lamps, a pyxis, phiale, lopas, relief bowl and lagynus, plus iron fragments.  Grave AXIX to the west, probably rock-cut and tile-covered, contained two miniature Lydian amphoriskoi, a pyxis, two lamps, an unguentarium, a phiale, lopas and bronze fragments. Beneath AXIX lay the rock-cut, tiled-covered cist AXXII, with two Lydian amphoriskoi, a pyxis, two lamps, a lopas, a coin, an ivory plaque, and bronze and iron fragments. Walls of an earlier building were exposed beneath this grave, which were likely contemporary with the burials found north of (and destroyed by) the monument. To the north, by the back face of the monument, was a group of five tombs (three tile-covered cists and two with no preserved cover, containing the inhumations of four adults and a child). B1, the child burial, contained a kantharos, lopas, lekanis, globular unguentarium, and a small sword dating to the second half of the first century BC, plus nails (probably from the bier) and bronze fragments.  At a slightly greater depth lay a row of three graves: BV (second- to first-century) contained pottery (a trefoil-mouthed oinochoe, lagynus, lopas, unguentarium, pylis, small bowl, lamp, and two Lydian amphoriskoi), a gold danake in the mouth, and fragments of iron and bronze; BIII (late second- or early first-century) contained a gold danake in the mouth, plus pottery (an unguentarium, chytra, two Lydian amphoriskoi, a lidded vessel, a lamp, and a small bowl), a bronze needle, a bronze coin, six nails, a gold sheet and a bronze fragment; BIV (end first-century BC to early first-century AD) contained two unguentaria, a large lidded open vessel, a chytra, gold sheet, a lead vessel, a bronze bowl, bronze sheet and bronze and iron fragments, two nails and a sea shell.  Grave BVI (second half second-century to early first-century) lay below BV and contained a large lidded open vessel, a chytra, three unguentaria, a lamp, a strigil, and bronze and iron fragments. East of the monument lay 13 tombs in total (six tile-covered simple cists, a simple cist covered with tiles and a limestone slab, four cists with limestone cover slabs, a sarcophagus, and one built tomb). Tomb AVIII, a rock cut cist of the second half of the second century, was set against the east wall of the monument:  it was covered with spolia including a grave stele, and had one pot as an offering on the west side. The cist contained on the east side a cranium with associated bone, a lamp and a mass of iron, and on the north (0.3m deeper) an undisturbed inhumation with two pyxides, two unguentaria, two lagynoi, two Lydian amphoriskoi, a small bowl, three further pots and one unspecified offering. The cist AXXIV, to the east, had one cover slab in secondary use: in the north of grave were two crania and associated bones with a bowl, pyxis lid, small bowl, prochous, unguentarium, lamp, iron dagger or strigil, and carbonised material. A previous burial phase (second half of the second-century), below this, had a single inhumation with a gold danake at the mouth, plus five unguentaria, two skyphoi, three small phialae, two lamps, a pyxis, two miniature Lydian amphoriskoi, a relief bowl, and nails from the bier. A wall lay 2.1m east of the monument, and to the north of it, grave AIV (a cist built of small unworked stone and tile, containing a single inhumation with three unguentaria, a coin, and nails, dating to the first half of the first century BC): outside the grave, in the northeast corner, was a cranium together with sherds. A group of eight graves lay to the northeast of the monument, beyond the wall (and west of a further wall which had five cuttings probably for grave stelai).  Grave BII, a stone sarcophagus (the contents of which were disturbed), contained two crania and a few other bones, four globular unguentaria, two lamps, two strigils, and two pieces of iron sheet, dating to the second half of the second/early first century BC.  Grave AII (end second- to early first-century), immediately to the east, was a cist with stone cover slabs which contained a lopas, lidded lekanis, small skyphos, amphora, two unguentaria, two Lydian amphoriskoi, two lamps, a comb, nails, and burnt wood. Grave AIII was a built cist with second-century pottery. BVII, a tile-covered cist, contained a single inhumation with a very little non-diagnostic pottery. Cist grave BX contained three gold danakes (one of which was placed on the mouth), a lidded chytra, lamp, lagynus, kyathos, miniature alabastron, two unguentaria, and a peg. The second half second-century cist grave BXI lay below BX: one vessel was placed on the cover slab, while the grave contained a gold wreath on the cranium of the deceased, two lamps, three unguentaria, a lopas, two lagynoi, a gilded bronze bracelet with snake-head terminals, a nail and bronze fragments. West of graves BX and XI, a lead kalpis contained bone: below this was a built cist grave BIX containing two bones, a little pottery and an iron knife. Few details of cist tomb BVIII were recorded. Grave AXXIII was a rock-cit cist parallel to the wall east of the monument (which was cut to hold the grave stele): a kalpis/hydria and a bronze item were placed over the cover tiles, with a skyphos immediately below them, and accompanying the burial a lidded lopas, a small bowl, Lydian amphoriskoi, three lamps, an egg and a strigil. No details are recorded of the tile-covered grave AI.

Lire la suite
Ancient Sikyon, Kamaratiza. A. Tsiokas (ΛΖ’ ΕΠΚΑ) reports the discovery of a section of paved road during rescue excavation on a plot 1km northeast of the archaeological site of Sikyon and ca. 150m from the city wall. The road ran east-west towards ancient Corinth to the east and rising up to Sikyon (the Stazousa fountain) to the west. Its width ranges from 4-6m with wheel ruts preserved in the paving: the length of the section is unknown as it continued beyond the plot. Destruction deposits (with building stones and a half capital with relief decoration) over the surface may indicate the presence of buildings to the south and north. In the southwest of the plot were structures built of stone and waterproof cement on a gravel foundation: between them and the south edge of the road was a drainage channel. There was a similar, wider channel on the north side of the road. Ca. 1.5m north of the road, beyond the channel, was the angled wall of a structure built of three rows of stones (a peribolos which may also have retained the rising ground north of the road).  Wheel ruts in the ground surface in this area indicate the existence of a road before the construction of the paving. A bronze coin of Sikyon dated to the first half of the second century BC was found on this ground surface.  Within the structure, in the east part, was a grave built of waterproof cement, which contained the bones of at least two individuals, an iron agricultural implement, two small glass vessels, and an Early Roman lamp. North of the wall, three pits were cut into the ground and covered with stone slabs and small stones. Two, in the north part of the area, were in contact with each other and covered with seven re-used stelai. A prochous placed over the cover of one indicates its use as a tomb. While all three pits were probably graves, they contained no evidence of their function.  A vaulted cistern, lined with waterproof plaster, was sunk into the ground in the northeast part of the area, with two stone-covered entrance shafts (with steps down). Initially for the collection of water, the cistern may later have been used for storage or refuse disposal.  It contained a large quantity of sherds, metal items, stone loomweights, and (gathered in one spot) gold leaves perhaps from a wreath or other ornament.  Four vessels (two domestic pots and two miniatures) set on the ground were not evidently associated with any feature. The majority of these features can be dated to the first and second centuries AD. Finds from the road surface were few (sherds and a stone loomweight), but date its use from the second century AD to the Late Roman period.

Lire la suite
Kyparissia, Mousga (property of K Lampropoulou). D. Kosmopoulos (ΛΗ’ EΠKA) reports on the discovery of 2 substantial walls about 150 m E of the plot of A. Konstantopoulou and P. Karakaïdou and 18 m SE of the railway line.  The walls, 6.4 m apart, were preserved to lengths of 7.1 and 3.6 m.  The fill in the area contained abundant ceramics, mostly coarseware and predominantly Late Roman in date.  A fragment of a stone lion-footed table leg was also found (Fig. 1).

Lire la suite
Ancient Thouria, Antheia Ellenika (olive grove of P. Moutsoula - G. Poulopoulos). X. Arapogianni (ΛΗ’ EΠKA) reports the discovery of a section of wall preserved to 3 courses that may form part of the fortification wall of the site of Thouria.  Finds were limited and undiagnostic.  The excavation was supervised by Z. Stavropoulou.

Lire la suite
Ancient Thouria, Kassouli Agias Varvaras.  E. Malapani (ΛΗ’ EΠKA) reports the discovery of 2 cist-tombs revealed during widening of an agricultural road at this location, a short distance outside the city-wall of Thouria.  Both tombs were almost completely destroyed, but at the E, short end of the second were found: 2 half-preserved skulls, a lamp, a plate and a jug, dating to the Classical period (end of the 4th-beginning of the 3rd c. BC) (Fig. 1).  The excavation was supervised by E. Moutsoula.

Lire la suite
Petalidi, anc. Korone (property of M. Daimonakou). E. Malapani (ΛΗ’ EΠKA) reports on the uncovering of a Roman bath complex as a result of construction work (Fig. 1).  The NE section of the complex had been destroyed, but the W and S section extended under neighbouring properties and a local road.  In the SE area of the property was located the praefurnium which supplied heat to the adjacent areas of the bath complex. It was constructed from baked brick, fieldstones and strong mortar, while the floor, supported on hypocaust pillars, was covered with irregular light-grey stone plaques.  N of the praefurnium there was a stone channel oriented N-S and a curved, partially destroyed wall, made of fieldstones, fired bricks and mortar, surrounded the SE external face of the praefurnium.  E of the Daimonakou property were identified rough stone walls, perhaps of buildings associated with the bath complex or of later date. On the E edge of the excavation area appeared a course of limestone blocks, orientated N-S, under the foundations of the Roman bath complex and continuing to the S; these belong to an earlier phase. A large amount of Roman ceramics was collected during the excavation as well as tegulae mammatae used in the walls of the bath.  Fragments of glass, iron nails and 2 corroded bronze coins were also collected.

Lire la suite
Chora Messenias, area of the Palace of Nestor. D. Kosmopoulos (2008) and X. Arapogianni (2009) (ΛΗ’ EΠKA) report on discoveries in the vicinity of the Palace of Nestor resulting from excavation for pipes being laid along the Chora-Pylos road.  A section of trench 1m wide within the archaeological zone of the site revealed coarseware ceramics, drinking vessels and other decorated finewares (kylikes, stirrup-jars, jugs) dating to the LH III period. At a location c. 180-200 m SW of the Palace LH building remains were found, specifically a wall with partially worked small- and medium-sized stone running parallel with the ditch and extending under the asphalt road to the N (Fig. 1).  Extension of the trench to E and W revealed a space, presumably of domestic character, within which was found a makeshift hearth made of tile and pithos fragments within a pebble floor (Fig. 2).  Traces of fire, lumps of clay soil and a piece of fired mud brick were found above the hearth, while the pebble floor apparently extended under the road bed.  About 3.5 m N a further wall, perpendicular to the line of the trench, was uncovered, N of which was a partially destroyed pebble floor extending to N and E (under the road bed). In 2009 remains of walls were detected and a small amount of Mycenaean pottery collected where the trench passed in front of the Palace in the Vayena property.  Further vessel fragments were recovered at a depth of 3 m in front of the parking area (at the 103rd km). The excavations were supervised by E. Malapani, M. Tsoulakos, B. Katsipanos and the author (2008) and by E. Kyriatzi (2009).

Lire la suite
AVERTISSEMENT
La Chronique des fouilles en ligne ne constitue en aucun cas une publication des découvertes qui y sont signalées.
L'EfA et la BSA ne peuvent délivrer de copie des illustrations qui y sont reproduites et dont ils ne détiennent pas les droits.