Archaeologists in the Turkish Aegean town of Çanakkale are celebrating the new discovery of a 2,200-year-old sarcophagus in the ancient city of Parion, one of the most important centers of the Helenistic era.
Golden earrings, rings and crown pieces have been found in the sarcophagus, which is believed to have belonged to a princess. An archeological team headed by Prof. Cevat Başaran unearthed the sarcophagus three days ago during excavations conducted in the village of Kemer near Biga, northeast of Çanakkale.
“We have discovered an important finding at the necropolis, which is the cemetery of the ancient city,” Başaran said. “This grave is most likely 2,200 years old. The golden jewelry shows this is the grave of a rich woman. We may call her the ’Princess of Parion.’”
Başaran pointed out that the sarcophagus contained a golden crown adorned with many gems, two golden earrings bearing the symbol of Eros and two golden rings. One of the rings was still on the finger bone of the skeleton, the professor added, noting that most of the bones were ruined due to moisture caused by the grave’s proximity to the sea.
Approximately 200 graves have been excavated at the ancient city of Parion. Other unearthed findings include “gifts for the dead,” such as teardrop bottles, oil lamps and toys.
Based on the findings, Başaran said he believes Parion was a glorious city ruled by the rich elite of the Hellenistic age. Excavations have been going on there for the past four years and have also unearthed jewelry believed to belong to the king and queen.
Parion was one of those cities which had the Gorgon on its coinage (not sure why I remembered that) …
The incipit of an interesting item from Discovery:
Italian archaeologists have discovered lotion that is over 2000 years old, left almost intact in the cosmetic case of an aristocratic Etruscan woman.
The discovery, which occurred four years ago in a necropolis near the Tuscan town of Chiusi, has just been made public, following chemical analysis which identified the original compounds of the ancient ointment. The team reports their findings in the July issue of the Journal of Archaeological Science.
Dating to the second half of the second century B.C., the intact tomb was found sealed by a large terracotta tile. The site featured a red-purple painted inscription with the name of the deceased: Thana Presnti Plecunia Umranalisa.
ante diem v idus iulias
- ludi Apollinares (day 6) — games instituted in 212 B.C. after consulting the Sybilline books during a particularly bad stretch in the Punic Wars; four years later they became an annual festival in honour of Apollo
- 1896 — death of Ernst Curtius (historian/archaeologist)
- 1941 — death of Sir Arthur Evans (excavator of Knossos)