Grevena (Grèce): Ancient Town Unearthed

Anna Wichmann

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Ancient greek city northern greece credit amnaAn ancient Greek town was uncovered near Grevena in northern Greece. credit: AMNA

The remnants of an ancient Greek town, including public buildings and grave sites, have been located recently at a site near the town of Grevena in northern Greece.

Artifacts from the site date all the way from the sixth century BC to the seventh century AD. The ancient city was uncovered in March 2022 after one year of excavations conducted by the Catalan Institute of Classical Archaeology (ICAC) in collaboration with the Antiquities Ephorate of Grevena.

The digs are part of a 5-year plan to excavate the site, which will likely uncover many more ancient treasures.

Although Greece is heralded for its long history and many archaeological sites, Grevena is not particularly known as an archaeological hub, a perception that may change due to the work of archaeologists there.

“The continuation of the research project aspires to expand upon and present the role and importance of the relatively unknown archaeological region of Grevena throughout the ages,” Dimaki stressed.

In the area surrounding the site, and within the site itself, archaeologists uncovered artifacts from the “Ottoman, Roman, post Roman, Classical, and Hellenistic periods,” according to Sonia Dimaki, head of research for the Ephorate.

Ancient greek tomb grevena credit amnaCredit: AMNA

Perhaps the most intriguing find from the ancient Greek town was a pair of Hellenistic stone tombs, each with a number of funerary objects located nearby, including amphorae, wine jugs, or oinochoes, bronze plates, and wine bowls called skyphoi, as well as small gold and silver relics.

Archaeologists found a bronze coin from the post Hellenistic period as well as large jugs used for storage called pithoi. In the other tomb, experts located a number of bronze bracelets and rings.

Archaeologists in Grevena also uncovered a church from the seventeenth or eighteenth century underneath the existing church of the Great Panagia in the town of Samarina.

Inside the church, walls painted with well-preserved murals were discovered, along with many fragments of ceramics.

Located on the eastern side of Mt. Smolikas, which is part of the Pindus mountain range, the village of Samarina proudly preserves its authentic Vlach traditions, which date back centuries.

At an altitude of more than 1,300 meters (4,265 feet) above sea level, Samarina is one of the highest inhabited villages or towns anywhere in southeastern Europe.

Usually one of the first inhabited places in Greece to see snow each year, it offers many opportunities for a unique and unforgettable outdoor experience.

Samarina is located just 50 km (31 miles) from Grevena, which is located in Western Macedonia in northern Greece.

Grevena is known for its prominence during the Ottoman period of Greece, as well as its abundance of wild mushrooms. Each year, devoted mushroom hunters flock to Grevena to collect the mushrooms from the area surrounding the town.