|Neue spät- und nachantike Monumente von Milet und der mittelbyzantinische Zerfall des anatolischen Städtewesens
|Year of Publication
|During the 2012 field campaign at Miletus a series of new late antique and mediaeval monuments were investigated: a bathhouse at the eastern harbour, an insula south of the West Market, the Byzantine city walls, their Serapeion Gate, architectural sculpture from the middle Byzantine period, the lates Byzantine settlement on the Theatre Hill, and the chapel of Hagia Paraskevi. The monuments are first discussed one by one and then evaluated in relation to the settlement history of Miletus. The early Byzantine city retained – and indeed conserved – ancient buildings, sculptures and streets. Even churches were designed in an ancient style and, when the Byzantine city walls were built not before the late sixth century and more likely in the seventh, the temple of Serapis became the focal point of the biggest and most splendid gate. However, in the middle Byzantine period the ancient city centre was abandoned and remained in ruins after it was destroyed by an earthquake. Middle Byzantine prosperity is instead attested in the surrounding countryside with the construction of numerous elaborate churches and a considerable amount of architectural sculpture. Middle Byzantine Miletus was evidently affected by ruralisation; this could explain why the city had to be re-founded under the new name of Palatia and re-built on the previously uninhabited Theatre Hill when, from the later eleventh century onwards, the arrival of the Turks necessitated a return to urban fortifications.