Alexandria's founded by Alexander

Alexandria's founded by Alexander the Great (by year BC): 334 Alexandria in Troia (Turkey) - 333 Alexandria at Issus/Alexandrette (Iskenderun, Turkey) - 332 Alexandria of Caria/by the Latmos (Alinda, Turkey) - 331 Alexandria Mygdoniae - 331 Alexandria (Egypt) - 330 Alexandria in Areia (Herat, Afghanistan) - 330 Alexandria of the Prophthasia/in Dragiana/Phrada (Farah, Afghanistan) - 330 Alexandria in Arachosia (Kandahar, Afghanistan) - 330 Alexandria in Caucasus (Begram, Afghanistan) - 329 Alexandria of the Paropanisades (Ghazni, Afghanistan) - 329 Alexandria Eschate or Ultima (Khodjend, Tajikistan) - 329 Alexandria on the Oxus (Ai-Khanoum OR Termez, Afghanistan) - 328 Alexandria in Margiana (Merv, Turkmenistan) - 326 Alexandria Nicaea (on the Hydaspes, India) - 326 Alexandria Bucephala (on the Hydaspes, India) - 325 Alexandria Sogdia - 325 Alexandria Oreitide - 325 Alexandria in Opiene / Alexandria on the Indus (confluence of Indus & Acesines, India) - 325 Alexandria Rambacia (Bela, Pakistan) - 325 Alexandria Xylinepolis (Patala, India) - 325 Alexandria in Carminia (Gulashkird, Iran) - 324 Alexandria-on-the-Tigris/Antiochia-in-Susiana/Charax (Spasinou Charax on the Tigris, Iraq) - ?Alexandria of Carmahle? (Kahnu)

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Climax turned into an anti-climax at Amphipolis?

A large cist grave has been revealed underneath the floor of the third chamber, with inside the grave proper. Inside and outside this grave are the scattered bones of the deceased, mingled with remains of a wooden coffin i.e. bronze and iron nails, apparently decorated with glass and bone or ivory.

This news should make the headlines right away and make everybody happy, yet the excitement is seriously tuned down by an offsetting comment that “the genetic material will be transferred to a special lab”. Well I hope so, to say the least, but nothing is being said if there are indications as to whether this is a male or female, if there are any grave goods that surrounded the remains as we would expect from any sizeable tomb. The only comment is: wait.

It is obvious that this tomb has been looted in the past, yet I find it strange that so much effort has been taken to refill the three chambers after robbing this tomb from its supposedly wealthy gifts. Considering the size of the mound (larger than the tumulus at Vergina), the precious marble from Thasos used for its construction and the tall lion of Amphipolis that once stood watch over it, I find this newly discovered tomb quite disappointing. To have such a majestic entrance with the two sphinxes, the elegant caryatids guarding the next chamber and the superb pebble mosaic floor, one would expect something more than a bare grave of simple porous stone.

On the other hand, in its official communiqué, the Greek Ministry of Culture states that geophysical studies will be carried out to determine whether there are other tombs hidden under this mound as was the case for the tumulus at Vergina.

This still leaves the matter of the staircase mentioned only yesterday unanswered; and the possibility or not to find a fourth chamber behind this third chamber remains anyone’s guess.

Once again, the official communiqué raises more questions than providing answers. Maybe the interviews planned for November 22 and 29 will shed more light on this mystery? Let’s hope so.

1 comment:

  1. There is talk of a casket and inhumation, but could not be a burial of several people in cinerary urns as in this tomb ( ), very similar, where there were five. Cremation at this time leaving enough bone remains as seen in Vergina.