| Amphipolis: Unraveling the tangled web of history

Amphipolis: Unraveling the tangled web of history

A city of Northern Greece with rich history and background affair, public interest in 2014 with a huge discovery… and a grave looking the enoiko of.

Amphipolis in addition to one of the major cities of Macedonia in antiquity, It was in Roman times a particular urban center in the region, It was the seat of the administrative district “Macedonian First” and seat of Bishop in the early Christian times.

The first findings linking Amphipolis with the early Christian times and make it a remarkable religious center of the time, brought to light by the excavations of, the 1961, the archaeologist Dimitris Lazaridis.


"But the longer axiologon ktirion Ito church early Christian times, revealed unto Bezesteni position '’ and within the field of Joseph Efthymiadis, East of apokalyftheisis in the year 1961 Colonnade. Ekplixin causes the fact that four palaiochristianikai basilikai eichon built in so very apostasin one from the other. Royal d Micron only part emerged, namely the eastern side on the outside and only a portion of the northern and southern side of. It was detected that this is a Royal triklitoy width 19,85 and diameter socket 6,75 m. The South side became clear on film 14,38 m. the North on length 11,20 m. The exterior walls of the Basilica have thickness 0,80 m. – 0,85 m., the wall of the socket 1 Metron and the mainstay 0,78 m. It was detected by a test trench genomenis unto the central aisle, that Royal had plakostrwton dapedon…”, the archaeologist Dimitris Lazaridis in "proceedings of the archaeological society, in the quote of the year 1964 with theme: "Anaskafai and ereynai at Amphipolis».

Written testimonies reveal that was a stopping point of the Apostle Paul, you going to Thessaloniki, passed from Amphipolis and preached Christianity in the region. Specific, It is reported that in the middle of the 1st century a.d, around 50 a.d., the Apostle Paul in his path by Philippi in Thessaloniki, passed from Amphipolis. According to oral testimonies, the Apostle Paul the year 49 a.d., along with three companions of Silas and Timothy Luke as they go from Philippi in Amphipolis, stopped in the village of Rodolivos of Amphipolis, After the apocalyptic vision that saw one night when he was in Troas, on the Asian side of the Dardanelles straits, There was built the ancient city of Troy.

According to the vision, as mentioned in the New Testament in the book of the acts of the Apostles, who wrote the Evangelist, physician and associate of Paul the Apostle refers specifically: and Paul appeared during the night a vision of "A female Macedonian stood erect, pleasing him and saying: Passage to Macedonia and help us ".

Christian Amphipolis is in the same archaeological site in place of the ancient Acropolis. With the end of the ancient world, the transfer of the capital of the Roman Empire in Constantinople and the establishment of Christianity as the official religion of, favored a new blooming period of Amphipolis as a place of Christian pilgrimage.

"When you were in ereynan parts with diakosmisin aplin reflectives crosses and various architectural elements namely sections columns and kiokranwn with diakosmisin soft akanthis sheets and cross in the Middle. In the soils of epichwsews perisynelegisan marquetry and mosaic sections EC katastrafeisis decoration of the walls of the Basilica "mentions in his memoirs, the archaeologist Dimitris Lazaridis.

During the 6th century one witnesses in place of pagan shrines of ancient Acropolis, continuing the monumental temples of the new religion. The excavations uncovered four Basilicas of triklites 5th and 6th century a.d. with superb mosaic floors. The most impressive Byzantine monument in the area is the perikentros Temple of the 6th century Basilica, one of the few early perikentroys temples in Greece. The edge of the city in early Christian times attest and other findings, as inscriptions, embossed, tombstones, vessels, coins and miniature paintings. Under discovered miliaria (miliaria), ododeiktes, in which state the mileage from the previous Station Road. In them also inscribed the name of the manufacturer of the Egnatia and later of the anakainistwn.

Despite the downsizing of the ancient city, Amphipolis of early Christian times extended and outside the fortification of the walls. The size and brilliance of religious buildings testify to the dynamism of the early Christian city.

Pestilence, in the 6th century and the movement of Slavic peoples then, led to the gradual degradation of the city and eventually led to its demise as an urban centre. According to the archaeologist Stavroula Dadaki, There is destruction of monuments and shrinking of the city, phenomenon found in all early Christian cities of the Mediterranean basin and reflects the critical period of the Byzantine Empire at that time. The absence of Amphipolis by the sources from the late 7th century and after (last mention of the diocese Amphipolis becomes the 692 a.d.), indicates the rapid decline and abandonment of. After the 9th century, the household core policy at the mouth of the Struma, where a port city, along the lines of mesobyzantinwn cities-castles, known by the name Chrysoypolis and in life as in the 16th century. In the area of the Delta of Strymon scattered buildings of Byzantine and post-Byzantine years, associated either with dependencies of Mount Athos with either the port of Kavala and the roads that lead from the coast to the hinterland.

On the ruins of the historic Amphipolis created a small settlement, the Marmarion, which lies north of the modern village, outside the fortified city and near the crossing of the river Strymon, known as a resource of marmari, the ancient wooden bridge, and served the parking needs of travelers, I coloured the Struma. Life in the Marmario continued in the post-Byzantine and early Ottoman times.

In the mid-14th century in the region of Amphipolis operate the brothers Alexios and John, who as allies of the Emperor John V Palaiologos distracted the region from Serbs. In 1367 erected a tower which dedicated the monastery Pantocrator. The tower rises in the first slopes of the Hill, near the village of marmari and survives by half. Along with the Tower of the Arabs on the other side, Domaine of the monastery of Zografou, It was concentration and distribution points of the agricultural production of the hinterland of Struma. The Marmarion as settlement survived as the early Ottoman times and bridge ships reached the mouth of the Strymon eiseplean. Last reported in 1547 from the browser Belon, While Chrysoupoli had already declined. The passage, however, the River at this point was retained until the 18th-19th century. By the 18th century a new settlement named Neochori was developed on the hillside and closer to the ruins of ancient and Christian Amphipolis. Today the modern settlement lies in a part of ancient walled city and North of Paleochristian.

The Paleochristian Amphipolis lies almost in the middle of ancient Amphipolis and occupies a small section from the top of a low hill where the Citadel of classical times. Defined by its own precinct. The yard with total perimeter 1105 m. It forms an irregular rectangle with an extension on the northeast corner. The South side coincides with the route of the southern part of the ancient Acropolis. Survives to a height that varies from 0,50 m. until 1,50 m. and width ranging from 1,65 m. until 2,75 m. It has two main gates on the North-South axis and three pylides. Reinforced at intervals by tetrapleyroys towers and a circular on the northeast corner. Show repairs, additions and recoveries in different seasons. Generally dated to the 4th-6th centuries. At the end of the 6th – early 7th century a transverse wall from North to South with a pentapleyro Tower in the city limited 1/4.

The early Christian Basilicas of Amphipolis

Within the walled area anaskaftikan four basilicas that conventionally have been named Royal s, (B), (C), (D), a periapsis building, a tank and portions of houses. The early Christian Basilicas of Amphipolis are small buildings than those of Philippi and Thessalonica. The type of xylostegis Royal, Guy who prevailed in the early Christian era throughout the Mediterranean basin. Decorated with exquisite architectural sculptures and mosaic floors. The Basilica A, It is the first Christian building identified, by archaeologist Dimitris Lazaridis. It is a three-aisled with splint, Exo-narthex and atrium, and different annexes. Divided into three aisles by two colonnades of which found several columns with their kionokrana. It also maintained the base of pulpit with antwpi scale and the mainstay of the dam of presbyterioy. The floor of the nave and the narthex was from marble slabs, While the side aisles and the Exo-narthex there were mosaics, from retained the South aisle, as well as those of the vestibule.

The Basilica dates based on the architectural decoration in the middle of the 6th century. The transverse wall that passed over the achristeyse. The Royal B, located near the northeast corner of the fortification wall. It is a three-aisled with a narthex and atrium. On the north side of the atrium and narthex developed four auxiliary spaces. The Middle nave brought marble flooring, While the lateral aisles mosaics of which barely maintained. Dated to the 6th century. The Royal C, located in the western part of the city, a few meters Northwest of the Royal s. It is a three-aisled with a narthex and atrium, which is located on the South side of rather than in Western. Brought mosaic floors with hearty vegetable and geometric decoration in all areas of. In the area of the apse is preserved a late one-room Chapel. Dating to the second half of the 5th century. The construction of the subsequent transept left her outside the teichismenis area.

Royal d ' is the last Royal in Apocalypse series, but rather the artefacts chronologically (2nd half of 5th century). It is a three-aisled with splint, patio and various annexes that develop in the North and South side of. Inside survives the mainstay of the presbyterioy dam and the base of the pulpit. The Middle aisle had marble floors and the lateral clay slabs. From the Atrium is maintained the mainstay of portico and columns that were in place.

The perikentros Temple is the most striking composition early Christian architecture monument of the city and is one of the few perikentroys temples of this period in Greece. Core of the temple is a central Hexagon surrounded by regional corridor floor plan oktagwnikis. In the East the five sided one protrudes outside the niche of apse flanked by two rectangular rooms. The entire Temple is decorated with rich marble inlays that in some places are preserved in very good condition.

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