Although October 2022 was a relatively quiet month when it comes to archaeological news from Turkey, the end of this month brought a sensational announcement from the archaeologists working for the Austrian Academy of Sciences. They were able to uncover an early Byzantine business and gastronomy district in the centre of ancient Ephesus. It is the most important discovery in the city since the now famous Terrace Houses were found half a century ago. The newly excavated area, located next to Domitian Square, was suddenly destroyed in 614/615 CE. All the household goods in the rooms were sealed by a thick burnt layer and thus preserved for posterity, making it possible to get unique snapshots of ancient life.
Text by our correspondent from Didyma, Glenn Maffia.
A rather curious snippet of information came to my attention recently, whereby I learnt that a scurrilous rumour is circulating that the three standing columns at the Temple of Apollo here in Didyma are recent reconstructions.
I found that quite laughable, though then realised that these ill-informed pieces of nonsense could impair people’s judgement of this most magnificent site. That perplexed me somewhat and therefore I decided to counter these malicious erroneous deceits with solid evidence; both from literary sources and pictorial.
September 2022 marked the 116th anniversary of the archaeological excavations in Hattusha, once the capital of the Hittite Empire. An 8,200-year-old temple structure was found during the 30th excavation season of the excavations at another major archaeological site in the area of Asia Minor, Çatalhöyük. Moreover, in the famous ancient city of Troy, the remains of a 3,700-year-old domed oven bearing the characteristics of Anatolian culture were discovered. Finally, during the excavations carried out in Bergama (ancient Pergamon), the tomb of the Priest Markos was unearthed.
Text and photos by our correspondent from Didyma, Glenn Maffia.
It delighted me immensely to recently read that the Aphrodisias Archaeology Workshop shall resume after the Covid enforced hiatus of some two years. This initiative, set in motion in 2018, fulfils an important educational and social criterion which hopefully realizes a vast improvement on the appreciation of historical artefacts; their context, their unadulterated quality and beauty, and the constant state of flux which encapsulates all civilizations.
The archaeological discoveries made in August 2022 in the area of Turkey encompassed many prehistoric and historic periods. A clay statuette of a female figure dating back 7,800 years was unearthed during the Ulucak Mound excavation in Izmir. At the ongoing excavations in the Gürpınar district of Van province, a chamber tomb carved into the bedrock and a water channel dating back to the Urartians were found. The excavations at Porsuk-Zeyve Höyük of the Ulukışla district of Niğde uncovered the plaster walls of the Persian period. At the ongoing archaeological digs in the ancient city of Gordion, the capital of the Phrygians, an inscription bearing the name of the ancient city was unearthed. The remains of a 2,200-year-old Roman fountain were discovered in northwestern Turkey at the ancient site of Assos. A statue depicting Apollo, a Greek god associated with light, was found during the excavations in the ancient city of Prusias ad Hypium in northwestern Düzce province. Finally, forty-one new graves were discovered during the ongoing excavation and restoration work underway in the Seljuk Meydan Cemetery in the Ahlat district of Bitlis province.