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An Ancient Necropolis of Chios Uncovered

22 July 2014 / 13:07:26  GRReporter
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Excavations in the "Psomi" area of Chios have provided valuable archaeological finds to both science and humanity. The archaeologists’ picks uncovered part of an ancient necropolis dated to the 7th and 6th century B.C., where, apart from people, the former inhabitants of the island used to bury some of their animals as well.

The finds were uncovered in the eastern part of the area. They were lying on different layers, placed on sea pebbles. The deceased were found in large earthenware vessels with the necks of the vessels sealed by flat stones.

Some of the vessels were not decorated, whereas others were decorated by means of geometrical patterns: horizontal lines and rounded projecting elements. The bodies of the deceased were laid down on sea pebbles, in a fetus position.

The archaeologists also found undecorated clay sarcophagi, similar to the ones of Klaziomenai, dating from the same period. These type of vessels are characterised by a dark blue colour and very bright clay, they are richly decorated and the undecorated parts were painted in bright glossy white.

The inhabitants of the ancient city in Asia Minor, south of Smyrna (now Izmir) as well as of the other side of Chios traditionally buried their dead in pots, without placing burial gifts in the vessels. Small children were also found buried in pots and a stone sarcophagus. However, most of the deceased were buried in a supine position, without being placed in a vessel.

What is of particular importance for the archaeologists, however, is an unusual find, not quite specific for the region. At the cemetery, the archeologists  found the skeleton of a dead horse, the first one found in the Northeast region of the Aegean Sea. The horse was placed in resting position. Its skeleton was strengthened and safely transported to the restoration laboratories of the Archaeological Museum of Chios.

According to the official announcement issued by the Greek Ministry of Culture, the findings are part of the earliest organised necropolis that has been ever found in the territory of the modern town of Chios and provide valuable information on the historical topography of the ancient city.

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