Mycenaean vessels among exciting finds by excavations at Hala Sultan Tekke in Cyprus island

Α Decrease font Enlarge font
Mycenaean vessels among exciting finds by excavations at Hala Sultan Tekke in Cyprus islandExcavations at the site of the Late Cypriot harbour city of Dromolaxia-Vyzakia (Hala Sultan Tekke)

The Department of Antiquities, Ministry of Transport, Communications and Works in Cyprus, announces that, during five weeks in April and June 2018, a Swedish team, headed by Professor Peter M. Fischer from the University of Gothenburg, carried out excavations at the Late Cypriot harbour city of Dromolaxia-Vyzakia (Hala Sultan Tekke). The team consisted of 27 students and specialists. Amongst the latter were those trained in osteology, botany, conservation, Aegean and Near Eastern ceramics, and geophysical prospecting.

In June 2017, the site was surveyed with a magnetometer with ten sensors mounted on a 5 m wide cart. This arrangement allowed the mapping of 23 hectares within a week, demonstrating stone structures and "pits" down to a depth of roughly 1.5 m. The architectural remains point to numerous man-made structures in the entire area of the survey, demonstrating the vast extent of the city. In 2018, 0.6 hectares of the magnetometer-surveyed area were re-investigated with georadar in order to see details of the buried features which facilitates the subsequent excavations. However, the results of the georadar survey were of limited value: the strong radar attenuation at the site, due to clay-rich soil, did not allow electromagnetic waves to penetrate deeper than a few decimeters from surface.

Fig1 Chariot krater

 

City Quarter 1 and 4, and Area A

This year's team was divided into three groups: two larger groups excavated in the fenced City Quarter 1 (CQ1) and the recently discovered CQ4 (CQ2 and 3 are also fenced and protected for future research but were not investigated this year). The third group opened two trenches close to Area A, just to the west of the mosque of Hala Sultan Tekke, in order to verify the results of the magnetic prospecting. The magnetometer map showed numerous pits and a few stone built structures in an area where tombs, offering pits and wells were exposed in the seasons 2014-2017.   

City Quarter 1

The results from the excavations in CQ1, which began in 2010, verified earlier observations that the nature of this quarter was mainly industrial but also domestic. CQ1 was used during four phases of occupation dating from Late Cypriot (LC) IIC to LC IIIA, i.e. the 13th and first half of the 12th centuries BC. There is significant evidence of urban copper production (cf. seasons 2013-2017): three furnaces, tuyères, crucibles and nearly half a ton of slag mixed with copper ore were found in the southern part of CQ1. In addition, purple-dyed textiles were produced there judging by numerous finds of bone beaters, loom weights and spindle whorls. Although this part of the city is mainly industrial, much of the pottery (fine wares) and other finds are of surprisingly high quality, indicating the elevated status of the metal and textile workers. Amongst the finds from CQ1 is the ivory pommel of a dagger.

 

Fig2 Local wares


City Quarter 4

This city quarter is between CQ1 and Area A and presents the largest city quarter so far discovered at Hala Sultan Tekke. The magnetometer map shows regularly arranged stone-built compounds of imposing dimensions intersected by streets. The entire layout resembles that of Engomi. The central part of this city quarter, measuring 65 m x 60 m, was fenced off in order to protect it from continued farming since the most recent structures are just 20 cm below surface (there are, however, equally interesting structures outside the fence. The extremely well-built walls of ashlar blocks distinguish this quarter from CQ1, CQ2, and CQ3, which are of industrial and domestic character. Here, we found a bathroom coated with ashlar blocks (both the walls and the floor) demonstrating an advanced hydro-technical construction: there is a water inlet at the base of the southern wall which is built of ashlar blocks. Opposite is a drain also built of ashlar blocks. The floor, which slopes towards the drain, is partly paved by ashlar blocks together with a thick layer of plaster. Outside the room (to the south of the inlet) is a water channel most likely leading upwards to a well surrounded by walls. The presence of a well could not yet be verified but the magnetometer map suggests a large "pit" (to be excavated in 2019). To the north of the bathroom is a corridor, at least 20 m long and three metres wide, which contained numerous pithoi and smaller vessels. This corridor represents a storage area for mainly liquids such as water, wine and olive oil. The storage corridor could be reached from the north via steps built of ashlar blocks. In front of the steps was a double gate, which is indicated by two door sockets. Just to the east of the gate is a stone installation with a thick layer of crushed murex shells (Hexaplex trunculus). So far, the expedition could expose only Stratum 1 in a limited area. Nevertheless, burned mudbrick and ash confirmed earlier observations from CQ1-3 that this phase ended in a violent destruction after which the city was abandoned, never to be occupied again. In summary: the extension of the compounds and the nature of the stone structures give the impression of an administrative building, maybe a palace or temple, where necessities were stored. The date of the most recent part of the compound is LC IIIA / 12th century BC.

Fig3 Mycaenean vessels 


Area A

One of numerous magnetic anomalies, which indicated "pits", was exposed. It was shown to represent a rich tomb (Tomb RR). The tomb has the shape of a recumbent "8" and contained 13 skeletons. Finds include plenty of local wares and numerous imports from the Aegean, the Levant and Egypt. Local wares are represented by various vessels of White Slip II (mature), Base-ring I and II and Plain White wheel-made wares. The Late Helladic and Minoan imports comprise pirifrom jars, alabaster, a feeding bottle and juglets. Amongst the most spectacular finds from this season is a complete, very large, chariot krater depicting two chariots drawn by two pairs of horses and 10 individuals. Egyptian imports include a faience bowl and an alabaster juglet. One of the female skeletons was buried with two pierced ivory discs of which one is incised with a pattern of petals. The ivory disks were part of her dress and were found close to her hips. The tomb is dated to LC IIA-C / LH IIIA-B.

Photo Source: Wikimedia Commons Copyright: Dickelbers License: CC-BY-SA 

 

Tornos
  1. 26/01 20:58

    Greece and France sign $2.79 billion Rafale fighter jet deal in Athens (video)

  2. 26/01 13:14

    Covid-19: Commission proposes update to coordinated approach on free movement restrictions

  3. 26/01 13:08

    Space tourism: Astronauts could be put into hibernation to travel to Mars

  4. 26/01 13:01

    Consumers sticking with e-commerce in Greece even after the pandemic

  5. 26/01 12:57

    Greek police permits gatherings up to 100 people until February 1

  6. 26/01 12:54

    New cold front brings snow, gale force winds and heavy rain in Greece

  7. 26/01 12:50

    Covid-19 cases slowly dropping amid nearly 3-month partial nationwide lockdown in Greece

  8. 26/01 12:30

    SNF Brain Insight Lecture on The Future of Learning and Education on February 9

  9. 26/01 11:10

    NATO head praises resumption of exploratory talks between Greece and Turkey

  10. 26/01 10:53

    Health official: Fewer than 500 vaccine doses lost from no-shows in Greece

  11. 26/01 10:47

    Artist reconstructs faces of famous Ancient Greeks on Twitter

  12. 26/01 10:30

    Greek archaeologists call for immediate opening of museums and cultural sites

  13. 26/01 10:20

    Greek commerce Sec-Gen: A third strict lockdown will be catastrophic for everyone

  14. 26/01 10:13

    Greece's updated energy and climate plans target 7GW of wind energy by 2030

  15. 26/01 01:58

    Thessaloniki’s Aristotelous Square makeover discussed at municipal meeting

  16. 26/01 01:50

    Greek MP: Deportations to begin with Pakistan and Bangladesh deemed “safe countries”

  17. 26/01 01:30

    Major drop in 2020 tax revenues recorded in Greece due to the pandemic

  18. 26/01 01:23

    American Airlines will fly from Athens to New York as of June 3, 2021

  19. 26/01 00:52

    Stavros Niarchos Foundation marks a quarter of a century of philanthropy (video)

  20. 25/01 23:54

    Decline in sales turnover recorded in Greece despite long queues

  21. 25/01 23:36

    Catholic Church in Greece announces new archbishop for seat of Tinos island

  22. 25/01 22:46

    European Investment Bank signs €200-million financing deal with Greece

  23. 25/01 22:05

    Greek FM talks EU-Turkey relations and pandemic with EU officials in Brussels

  24. 25/01 19:18

    No side effects from elderly citizen vaccinations reported in Greece

  25. 25/01 18:18

    Exploratory talks between Greece and Turkey conclude with next round in Athens

  26. 24/01 21:28

    Lockdown extension to February 1 published in Greek Government Gazette

  27. 24/01 21:25

    Greek PM: We want to create a ‘fast travel lane’ across the EU

  28. 24/01 21:19

    Up to two passengers and the driver allowed in taxis cars in Greece as of Monday

  29. 24/01 21:15

    Expert: 2021 Year of Greek wine and food

  30. 24/01 21:05

    Greek university rectors offer security-for-funding deal to government

  31. 24/01 20:24

    Ancient Greek statues discovered near Athens Airport

  32. 24/01 18:53

    Greece records 334 new Covid-19 infections and 24 fatalities on Sunday

  33. 24/01 15:10

    Colchicine drug utilized in the fight against coronavirus in Greece

  34. 24/01 14:01

    Supermarkets and retail stores allowed to stay open in Greece on Sunday, January 24

  35. 24/01 12:57

    Cyprus bids to attract investment and promote the film industry

  36. 23/01 22:05

    EU Court allows Bulgaria to make knock-off Cypriot halloumi cheese

  37. 23/01 21:58

    New Secretary of State will strive to enhnace US-Greek security ties

  38. 23/01 21:55

    Halki Summit IV dedicated to COVID-19 and Climate Change between January 26–28

  39. 23/01 21:50

    Greek high schools students will return to their classrooms on February 1

  40. 23/01 21:27

    The Crusader castle of Chlemoutsi in the Peloponnese region of southern Greece

  41. 23/01 19:09

    Greece records 605 new Covid-19 cases and 24 fatalities on Saturday

  42. 23/01 18:37

    Greek regions of Attica and North Aegean removed from Germany’s high-risk areas travel list

  43. 23/01 18:22

    Three consecutive weather fronts forecast to affect Greece until Wednesday

  44. 23/01 10:59

    The Japanese government is expected to cancel the 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games

  45. 23/01 10:34

    Deadline for binding financial offers for the concession of Egnatia Odos extended to April 1

  46. 23/01 00:41

    Greek government: No levies on UK imports and only relevant VAT

  47. 22/01 16:19

    Greek retail sales record turnover drop by 5.6% during Q3 2020

  48. 22/01 16:08

    Economics Olympiad held by Secretariat General of Public Diplomacy and Greeks Abroad

  49. 22/01 16:02

    Greek FM discusses bilateral issues with German Ambassador to Athens

  50. 22/01 15:49

    Archbishop of America offers prayer at Presidential Inaugural Prayer Service (video)

  51. 22/01 15:42

    7-day quarantine for foreign passengers and restriction of flights until February 8 in Greece

  52. 22/01 15:37

    AHEPA congratulates Biden-Harris Administration on their inauguration

  53. 22/01 15:36

    Meeting at Greece's health ministry on the issue of coronavirus mutations

  54. 22/01 15:25

    The Hellenic Initiative Australia awards $50,000 ‘Winter Appeal for Greece’ grants

  55. 22/01 15:10

    Finance Ministry: Greece has to exploit all of its comparative advantages to advance

  56. 22/01 13:20

    Conde Nast Traveler: The top 5 Greek islands worth visiting during 2021

  57. 22/01 13:14

    Holocaust Remembrance Day of the Greek Jews features The Good Shepherds

  58. 22/01 11:20

    Greek PM underlines need to speed up EU's vaccines approval process

  59. 22/01 01:26

    Microsoft investment will transform Lavrio port through extended housing reconstructions

  60. 22/01 01:15

    US-Greek relations set to improve even more under Biden administration

  61. 22/01 01:11

    Turkish occupied side of Cyprus imposes COVID-19 night curfew as well

  62. 22/01 01:05

    Athens Municipality to support entrepreneurs in culture sector with up to € 7.7 million

  63. 22/01 00:55

    AP: Restructuring Norwegian Air to get government support

  64. 22/01 00:46

    Daily Covid-19 cases ease again, albeit marginally in Greece on Thursday

  65. 22/01 00:38

    Prime Minister: “Brand Greece” must be refreshed this year

  66. 22/01 00:28

    The opening of all schools among top priorities of the Greek government

  67. 22/01 00:18

    New US President to sign Covid-19 measures requiring mask use to travel

  68. 22/01 00:02

    Reinforcing bridges between Greek universities and diaspora on January 24

  69. 22/01 00:01

    Greek police to procure specialized vehicles against the Covid-19 pandemic

  70. 21/01 22:21

    Olympic Museum set to open in the Greek capital of Athens during 2021

  71. 21/01 22:02

    Survey: Greece among world bucket list destinations for global travel writers in 2021

  72. 21/01 21:54

    Greece still the only EU country with 'green' zones on ECDC Covid-19 map

  73. 21/01 21:44

    UNWTO Global Tourism Crisis Commitee meets again to explore safe travel in age of vaccines

  74. 21/01 21:43

    Smithsonian: DNA analysis sheds light on the mysterious origins of the Ancient Greeks

  75. 21/01 20:20

    Vaccination appointments for citizens aged 80-84 available in Greece at 18:00 on Friday

  76. 21/01 20:16

    Bank of Greece records increase in NPLs stock by 8-10 billion euros

  77. 21/01 19:38

    Greek PM at EU Summit: Digital vaccination certificate 'is about opening up freedom of movement'

  78. 21/01 19:08

    Minister: Journalists covering protest rallies to have 'designated positions' in Greece

  79. 21/01 13:28

    Google and Koala study: Americans look to Greece for post-pandemic vacations in 2021

  80. 21/01 04:06

    Ice sculpture replica of Odeon of Herodes Atticus presented at China’s Harbin Ice Festival

  81. 21/01 03:48

    Fewer customers allowed in Greek supermarkets since store re-opening on Monday

  82. 21/01 01:45

    Analysts expect Greek tourism sector to rebound in 2021

  83. 21/01 01:33

    Greek PM tweets congratulations to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris

  84. 21/01 01:14

    Greece proposes three measures to restart global tourism industry

  85. 20/01 22:53

    Night curfew in Greece remains in force despite easing COVID-19 lockdown

  86. 20/01 22:19

    Greek President: Cooperation with US even stronger during Joe Biden's tenure

  87. 20/01 21:52

    Wizz Air Abu Dhabi operates inaugural flight to Greek capital of Athens (video)

  88. 20/01 21:09

    Greek Parliament approves extending territorial waters to 12 miles in Ionian Sea

  89. 20/01 20:38

    Grand Club in the northern Greek city of Kavala reopens after extensive renovations

  90. 20/01 19:32

    Registered unemployment in Greece records an increase of 2.42% during December

  91. 20/01 18:12

    Emergency number 112 upgraded with e-Call vehicle services in Greece

  92. 20/01 16:22

    Travel receipts in Greece at €4.24 billion during first 11 months of 2020

  93. 20/01 12:43

    Two stolen 18th-century religious icons to return to Greece from Beirut

  94. 20/01 12:37

    Greek island of Crete most popular summer holiday destination for British travelers in 2021

  95. 20/01 04:20

    AP: EU Commission urges member states to speed up vaccination

  96. 20/01 04:15

    Emirates among first airlines globally to trial IATA travel pass

  97. 20/01 04:08

    Archbishop of America to take part in virtual Presidential Inaugural prayer service

  98. 20/01 04:02

    Nominated to lead UNWTO for four more years

  99. 20/01 04:00

    Finance Minister: Greek state raised two billion euros in liquidity

  100. 20/01 03:49

    Etihad Airways one of the first carriers globally to launch IATA Travel Pass