Sunday, February 3, 2013

Afghani cap with Hellenistic Connection

Doing research on Hellenistic centers in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India, I discovered an article titled "The Cap that Survived Alexander", by Bonnie Kingsley, in the American Journal of Archaeology, Vol. 85, No. 1, Jan., 1981.

It connects the history of the chitrali that is worn today in Pakistan and Afghanistan with the Kausia (Καυσία), the cap worn Greeks during the Hellenistc era.

Source (Jstor)
Wikipedia entry on Kausia

Monday, January 21, 2013

Nike of Samothrace Restoration

The Louvre Museum has decided to restore and repair the beautiful statue we call Nike of Samothrace. They will apparently remove it from view in September 2013.

As I was looking for more news about this, I came across this interesting little page with images of the restorations that have created the statue in its current form: 

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Antikethera Shipwreck: a New Diving Expedition

The underwater site has been scarcely explored outside the initial discovery of the wreck in 1900,  and a Jack Cousteau expedition in 1976. A recent dive in October of 2012 has revealed that the scattered artifacts span a very large area, something that led this article to hypothesize that there might be "two shipwrecks" involved on the same site.

While it's exciting to know that new excavations on the site might be underway, the recent dive did not yield any important finds. The fact that the site is looked upon with renewed interest is encouraging.

Source article:

Friday, November 30, 2012

Alepotrypa Cave excavations of stone age presence

According to this article the lengthy excavations in Alepotrypa cave (in Diro, Mani, in the Peloponnese) brought to light important finds that shed some light on life 11000 years ago.

The cave was used as a cemetery in the beginning of the Mesolithic era. The finds led Mr. Papathanasopoulos to theorize that the cave was a place of rituals in the Neolithic era, and that it was probably active in earlier times. He believes that the cave was used by Neanderthals, but excavations have not reached that depth yet.

The cave is 1 km long, and it has a large chamber  in the middle along other smaller rooms. At the end of the large room there is a pool of fresh water. The cave collapsed 5000 years ago, and this it's use ceased.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Three shipwrecks found at a depth of about 1200m in the Ionian sea between Corfu and Paxi. The wrecks were found while " the oceanographic vessel "Aigeo", in the framework of a collaboration between the Hellenic National Marine Research Centre and the Marine Ancient Heritage Superintendent's Office on the seabed where the "Poseidon" underwater gas pipeline (which will connect Italy and Greece) is to be laid"

 Read more here

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Thera Eruption affected the entire Levant

According to this New York article the eruption of the Thera volcano in the 16th c. BCE affected the entire Middle East.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Acrotiri to reopen!

At last, the archaeological site of Acrotiri, in Thera (Santorini) will reopen by the end of March, 2012. Seven years after the site's roof collapsed the new roof is undergoing final safety tests before the site opens its doors to visitors.

It is a beautiful and vastly underrated site in one of the most visited islands of Greece, dating to the middle of the second millenium BCE. Some of its most beautiful wall frescoes are housed in the Archaeological Museum in Athens, but a plethora of other frescoes and artifacts from the buried town are on exhibit at the Thera Prehistoric Museum in the town of Fira in Santorini.


Friday, February 10, 2012

Greek Archaeology Highlights from 2011

Even during a historic financial crisis, Greece continues to dazzle with unique and universality of its past.

For us Greeks, the list posted at ANSAmed is a bitter reminder of the greatness that was bestowed on the land by giants who rendered their culture unforgettable. Unfortunately, we have been reduced to hoping that contemporary political demagogues will be quickly forgotten with no trace.

1) A small 2,500-year old wooden statue in perfect conditions. The impressive find was made in the Sanctuary of Artemis in Vravrona during building works on the archaeological site's drainage well. Other objects were found alongside the statuette, all of them dating from the 5th century BC.

2) A square jasper stamp, dark red in colour and bearing incisions in Minoan hieroglyphics, the oldest Minoan texts of Crete. The find, which the archaeologists Iris Tsachili and Eleni Papadopoulou say is very important, was made at the peak sanctuary of Mount Vrysinas in Rethymno, on the island of Crete.

3) The tombs of men buried alongside their animals, which came to light in the village of Mavropigi in Eordaia. The tombs contain 11 men and 16 animals (horses, dogs, oxen and a pig). The director of the office of Antiquities, Georgia Karamitrou-Mentesidi, says that the distinguishing feature of the necropolis is the large number of animals placed alongside the dead men.
You can read the entire list of the top 10 of Greek archaeological discoveries of last year here

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Earlies Minoan Hieroglyphics

Recent excavations in the Minoan peak sanctuary Vrysinas in Rethymno, Crete, have unearthed a four-sided seal embossed with an early hieroglyphic script.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Archimides text on exhibit in Baltimore

The oldest copy that contains Archimides' texts is going on Exhibit at the Walters Art Gallery in Baltimore, Maryland.

"Most of the text in the manuscript was recovered using multispectral imaging, but the toughest leaves were taken to the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource lab. There, X-ray beams were used to reveal text beneath the forgery paintings and heavy grime.
But visitors to the exhibition won’t need any special technology to see the original writings on the pages.
“The Archimedes text is quite visible to the naked eye,” Quandt said.
The conservation work is expected to be complete by the end of the year, but the scholarly work will continue for years."

Read the story at 
Exhibition in Md. showcases ‘Lost and Found’ Archimedes text uncovered by scientists, scholars - The Washington Post