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Outdoor sanctuaries of Cybele in Samos

Important disclosures in Pythagorion of Samos, "February 29, 2012

Outdoor sanctuaries of Cybele in Samos Important disclosures in Pythagorion of Samos, "February 29, 2012 <aScience / History Archaeologist Royal Giannoulis As early as the late 19th century. were known to the western and northern edges of the upper city of ancient Samos defined largely by clusters of niches, carved in natural vrachismo, which were identified correctly as outdoor sanctuaries, dedicated to the Mother Goddess Cybele. The last big fire that hit the island in July 2000 deforestation completely low hill above the Artemision, thus bringing to light yet another impressive as to the structure of the outdoor sanctuary. Temple of Cybele, 4th cent. B.C. from Enneakrounos Athens (0.45 x 0.27 m), National Archaeological Museum " id="pdf-obj-0-8" src="pdf-obj-0-8.jpg">
Outdoor sanctuaries of Cybele in Samos Important disclosures in Pythagorion of Samos, "February 29, 2012 <aScience / History Archaeologist Royal Giannoulis As early as the late 19th century. were known to the western and northern edges of the upper city of ancient Samos defined largely by clusters of niches, carved in natural vrachismo, which were identified correctly as outdoor sanctuaries, dedicated to the Mother Goddess Cybele. The last big fire that hit the island in July 2000 deforestation completely low hill above the Artemision, thus bringing to light yet another impressive as to the structure of the outdoor sanctuary. Temple of Cybele, 4th cent. B.C. from Enneakrounos Athens (0.45 x 0.27 m), National Archaeological Museum " id="pdf-obj-0-12" src="pdf-obj-0-12.jpg">

As early as the late 19th century. were known to the western and northern edges of the upper city of ancient Samos defined largely by clusters of niches, carved in natural vrachismo, which were identified correctly as outdoor sanctuaries, dedicated to the Mother Goddess Cybele. The last big fire that hit the island in July 2000 deforestation completely low hill above the Artemision, thus bringing to light yet another impressive as to the structure of the outdoor sanctuary.

Outdoor sanctuaries of Cybele in Samos Important disclosures in Pythagorion of Samos, "February 29, 2012 <aScience / History Archaeologist Royal Giannoulis As early as the late 19th century. were known to the western and northern edges of the upper city of ancient Samos defined largely by clusters of niches, carved in natural vrachismo, which were identified correctly as outdoor sanctuaries, dedicated to the Mother Goddess Cybele. The last big fire that hit the island in July 2000 deforestation completely low hill above the Artemision, thus bringing to light yet another impressive as to the structure of the outdoor sanctuary. Temple of Cybele, 4th cent. B.C. from Enneakrounos Athens (0.45 x 0.27 m), National Archaeological Museum " id="pdf-obj-0-16" src="pdf-obj-0-16.jpg">

Temple of Cybele, 4th cent. B.C. from Enneakrounos Athens (0.45 x 0.27 m), National Archaeological Museum

It is known that the excavations conducted here over 35 years the Greek Archaeological Service in the lower city of ancient Samos (the extent of which coincides approximately with the area occupied by modern settlement of Pythagorean) rescue mostly due the rapid development of tourism, have brought to light most of the residential fabric, the Agora, public buildings and sanctuaries and much of the road network.

Excavations in Pythagorion

Relatively recently began systematic research in the area of the upper city, until then, our knowledge was very limited, based mainly on the description of Strabo, who clearly distinguishes the flat part of the city (down town) and the part of the one " perched on the mountainside (the Vine) towering over her. " But occasionally surveys and visible architectural remains supports the hypothesis that there unfolded one of the major districts of ancient Samos, with luxury residences and public buildings, because of its privileged position and panoramic views across the SE. coast, the Heraion and Mycale, under the supervision of sea routes connecting the Dodecanese and the whole SE.Mediterranean coasts of Asia Minor and the islands of the NE Aegean. In the same area as modern researchers tend to identify the location of the acropolis of ancient Samos hypothesis is reinforced by recent findings in the area.

These surveys documented and substantially large area of the city amounted to about 1 sq. km, although excluding the area of the mountain top vineyard, which was left unstructured for safety reasons until the northern part of the wall, which had six perimeter km

Apart from the undoubtedly dominant cult of Hera, the temple which was one of the most important and famous in the Mediterranean basin and clearly depended on the town, excavations in the Pythagorean unearthed other important shrines and temples 1 .At least four temples found, as is expected, in the ancient market or close to it, however, and both sides of the Sacred Way leading from the city at the Heraion. Two of them remain unidentified, the third to B. the Sacred Road has been identified with the temple of Dionysus and a fourth, in the Agora, the Temple of Aphrodite. Considered the possible existence of another sanctuary in the western outskirts of Castle Hill, to south of the ancient market, while public building, probably chapels-identified one of the important buildings of the archaic Samos, which was revealed in SE area of the city to the port on the remote from the other shrines.

An inscription found west, outside the city, documenting the existence of yet another sanctuary of Athena patron goddess of Athens-founded apparently by the Athenians, perhaps during the first Athenian colonists of 441/440 BC 2 . It is likely that the church have been in the broad plain of the country, west of the suburb of the city, mentioned by Herodotus, which identified many rural villas in various places, which chronologically coincide with the period of Athenian colonists.

In 1979 it was discovered, moreover, immediately outside the western part of the wall, known from the narrative of Herodotus sanctuary of Artemis, which the digger dating to propolykrateious times (Fig. 1). The sanctuary is filled anyway limited our view of the

temples of the lower city and we hope to conclude with additional research in the future.One of the important elements that came to light during the excavation of Artemision was the discovery paved road, which led to LD edge of the upper city and sanctuaries that are the same with the Artemision area immediately to the North.

temples of the lower city and we hope to conclude with additional research in the future.One

Topography of the excavations of the sacred to the goddess Cybele in Samos.

It should first be pointed out that the area where developed in antiquity over the ancient city of Samos, to north of the current settlement remains askafti in bulk, because it is part of unstructured protection and therefore there was no need to make life- excavations. From the sanctuaries, which certainly existed in its region, two are known so far, while recent findings suggest the possibility that other, as is naturally expected.

One of these should be sought in place of a large building complex "palace" type (Fig. 1, No. 8), which dominates the middle of the city over three where discovered quadrangular construction, low stone frame and floor paved with irregularly hewn stone slabs. The construction, although smaller in size, immediately refer to the known and usual votive pedestals of the Archaic period, which abound in the Heraion of Samos. It is obvious that the foundation is in connection even with other ancient relics found in the area, leaving open the possibility to locate a sanctuary or even a major public building in ancient times the upper town.

At the western end of the upper city is known Thesmoforio the classical period (sanctuary of Demeter and Kore), discovered in 1976 a short distance east of the western part of the wall (Fig. 1). Although not yet studied, their identification is certain, among other things,

the numerous figurines of the type of "ydriaforon", which is a substantial part of the rich offerings of the sanctuary.

Outdoor shrines of Mother goddess Cybele

As early as the late 19th century., It was known that the western and northern edges of the upper city of ancient Samos defined largely by clusters niches carved into the natural vrachismo, which were identified correctly as outdoor sanctuaries, dedicated to the Mother Goddess Cybele. Reference to them is first made in 1898 by J. Böhlau, extensive excavations of western necropolis. Once the 1975 but was made by R. felsch a first attempt to identify, design and photography fairly large number of niches mainly in the north sanctuaries, as could allow the dense natural vegetation covering the mountain and make it difficult even today research 4 .

The boundaries between the urban fabric and the region of sacred lays until today the provincial road leading from the Pythagorean in Tunnel, following the course certainly an ancient precursor, who correctly took a clear separation between the northern steep slope of gray hard limestone and south, formed mainly from landslides gravel and shells on the natural soft red rock - separation observed throughout, almost, the longitudinal axis of the slope of the mountain. Even more should be sought here the northern boundary of the residential area of the ancient city, almost immediately after which begins the hard vrachismos with the temples of Cybele.

Better known to previous research appear to have been two major groups of clusters along the horizontal axis of the mountain Spiliani, while the third group (western altar), immediately inland from the western part of the city wall, only sporadic niches and carvings were identified, both he and the signature when trying to identify them in order to integrate the sacred topography of ancient Samos. But the last big fire that hit the island in July 2000, deforestation completely low hill above the Artemision, thus bringing to light yet another impressive as to the structure of the outdoor sanctuary.

Figure 7 Access to sacred seems done by roads and trails, two of whom identified: one

Figure 7

Access to sacred seems done by roads and trails, two of whom identified: one in the temple of Artemis, as mentioned above, and another in the ancient market, which started from the second main road of the ancient city , leading to the eastern part of the island and the temple of Poseidon near the Strait of Mycale. The upward trend continued with steps carved into the steep slope, as well as scales linking together the various levels of the sacred.

With the exception of two niches identified in 1967 off the eastern side of the wall, near gate C, and remain the only so far known in the eastern area of the city, sacred beginning approximately 150 meters west of the eastern wall, looking usually a single surface of the rock-like curtain, like the first four blocks located at the same height line.When this single surface ceases to exist, sought a similar level to the next, as the 5th cluster until the theater district. However, individual niches or small groups turbinates were also north and south along the main line of the sacred. In many cases, the front of the block was formed close rig, which lead few steps. For reasons dictated purely by topography, groups of clusters of the northern sanctuary divided into NE and NWsanctuary with discriminator region of the ancient theater where the opening of the modern provincial road Pythagorean-Spiliani should be destroyed unbroken continuity of the line of clusters, which certainly existed in antiquity (Fig. 1).

The Northeast sanctuary

Access to VA sanctuary was north of the large complex (see above) with wide terraces carved into the rock, leading to a large plateau with two sacred caves. Above the plateau starting the first cluster, which consists of eight sockets, quadrilateral or rectangular, in

one of which, only the gable, is saved footprint emboss the decorated. The second cluster comprises five niches, from which the three pediments and a double. Impressive is the 3rd cluster with twelve niches, of which only one gable (fig. 1). At the western end of the first formed by carved rectangular spaces that abound in all three sanctuaries, as we shall see, with presently unknown function but impressive dimensions. Rectangular stones also not falling into niches and are at a sufficient height above the ground, we meet several of the clusters and it seems rather were used for the deposition dedications or offers to the goddess.

The fourth cluster presents more complex composition with eight niches (of which two pediments) and two natural caves, which is divided into three sections. In one of the caves is carefully carved rectangular desk, perhaps for the deposition of tenders or the celebration of worship. The second of A. conch is the only so far found in which groove for receiving and securing relief or statuette of the goddess, while in another conch is relief of the goddess, living room with a lion in her arms-popular guy who first appeared in iconography of the goddess in the 6th century. 5 (Fig. 2).

In the next cluster, consisting of three niches, one of which pediment, well preserved the representation of the goddess seated on a throne, possibly with pole-type known in the iconography of the end of the 6th to 5th century. BC (fig. 3). Greater interest are two horizontal bands in the right form, which we believe represent either their hewn in the rock terraces for access to the sanctuary, and by implication, the very sanctuary of the goddess, or a chiseled into the rock 'throne', which connoted the "surface" of Mother Goddess, along the lines of Phrygians temples.

one of which, only the gable, is saved footprint emboss the decorated. The second cluster comprises

Figure 11

After the fifth group, the sequence of blocks in the immediately passes higher elevation and the dividing line between the distance grows. In the sixth cluster, which consists of

four niches, from which a double gable, is the only one to A. oriented niche, unlike all the niches of the northern sanctuaries are oriented to N.

One of the most interesting information to complete the image of the sacred newly identified between 6th thickets and ancient theater, where it was found, carved into the rock large rectangular platform with ramp, the person whose traces with plaster coating (Fig.1, No. 4). The plateau of the platform there quadrilateral carving on the reception of the plinth, a statue or altar. In the north wall of the frame of the platform there are three niches and a short distance to N. of two more. Niches recorded by felsch and the area north of the theater, but it was not possible to detect them because of vegetation. Instead, after the fire revealed two more new clusters at about the already known, thus demonstrating that the continuity of the niches is relentless around the longitudinal axis of the "sacred mountain" and so the goddess protected from north the whole city.

The NW sanctuary

With the only interruption to the point where the modern road leading to the monastery Spiliani probably destroyed and other niches begins immediately west of the NWsanctuary. Two clusters were identified only recently and have not yet been studied, and an individual interest niche with monumental dimensions, which was 24 m higher than the height of the ninth line block, which is greater in length and extends to the south entrance Efpalineiou with recesses 24 into 4 groups. The individual large conch bears plastered with mortar mounted on a substrate from broken tile and save clean the trail of apokekroumeno relief.

The interesting data, collected by the latter cluster and then quote, implying, I think, a radical change from amelestero and simpler method of construction of the niches in the NE sanctuary. The first (eastern) part of the cluster are six niches of which one double.For the second one, which shows the largest with fourteen niches and one groove for receiving column has carefully carved wall of rock, which gives the impression of a wall, part of which is completely vertical and smooth. Forward in one of the niches, especially elaborate and honed with a stone frame and pediment was unearthed by the fallen felsch belonged relief, whose whereabouts are currently ignored. In front of the niche there are remains of small fragments cobbled stone blocks, arranged in reddish plaster substrate as a coating on top of larger plates. Another niche of the same group presents diligently building and monumental proportions, with a total height of 1.75 m (Fig. 4). Two floors, with horizontal groove that extends to the edges of the socket, the socket covering plates.The lower recess is coated with a thick coating layer as the upper, inside of which is carved with a lower arcuate recess ceiling. The chime is topped by a pediment and has side pillars. Between the second and third group of 9 cluster is large, rectangular, artificial cave with an opening of about 3 m, slightly domed roof. The floor is paved with mortar coating and the opening closed with a wall built with irregular stones and kourasani.Here westward two adjacent rectangular areas with presently unknown function. In the north wall of the eastern area formed a second level with a horizontal carving the rock, similar to other clusters, perhaps for the deposition tenders goddess.

Figure 10 9th cluster close two monumental niches with height reaches 1.20 meters, among which is

Figure 10

9th cluster close two monumental niches with height reaches 1.20 meters, among which is configured wide "pessary" (fig. 5). One of them is a pediment with staggered frames and katachomeni up about half the height. Front and west were spotted in 1975 three blocks were (pedestals), one of which with periteneia. Front of the pedestals formed wide stepping carefully carved the profile which gives the form of a regular stone blocks. It is worth noting that the dimensions of the two niches are unique in both the northern and the western shrine, we will see soon, bearing in mind that all niches investigated so far are much smaller, and in some it did not fit anything larger than a small idol of the goddess. The exception may be due to the fact that the two niches were very near the southern mouth of Efpalineiou trench, which was carrying the precious water for the city, and from there began the great outer conductor, which channels water fountains along the slope of the mountain. Two more large niches, negligent construction, there immediately east and north of the mouth. The floor is of a stone blocks (fig. 6), below which visible gap, which probably means that the niche was storey and the lower section is now epichomeno.

The Western sacred

Completely different in structure but also the form of the niches presented the western sanctuary (fig. 7), which is located approximately 40 m east of the western part of the wall and covers the entire extent of a low hill between the lower Artemision found in LDthe temple of Cybele, and higher Situated Thesmoforio to north of (Fig. 1). Here niches are small clusters arrayed periodically at all levels of the hill, which is definitely smoother than the steep slope of the highest mountain of vines where spreading the northern sanctuary. The niches are mostly oriented south, southwest and southeast and

one to B (the only one in all the sacred). Across the hill found scales provide access between levels, and the whole area of the sanctuary is full of carvings and tenons for receiving bricks, statues, votive pedestals and probably wooden columns.

one to B (the only one in all the sacred). Across the hill found scales provide

Figure 2

Clusters are, as we said, a small number of niches (fig. 8) and it seems that most were shaded, as shown by circular and square Tenons present at the sides and front of them, for the reception of wooden columns, but the colored tiles roof, recently discovered in space. Forward in most clusters formed usually rig, which leads carved into the rock stepping (Fig. 9). The niches are mostly temple-like, with a gable side and columns (Fig. 10) and some are large compared with the dimensions of their depth, feature not observed in the northern respective temple (Fig. 11). In all clusters are arrayed at the same height and only one so far discovered niches in two levels (fig. 12). Some seem very small to accommodate terrain, so we must assume they were for placing small clay figurines or even votive inscriptions. The first cleaning in some clusters unearthed numerous figurines of the goddess, who belong to different types known iconography.

The throne of the goddess

One of the most important elements of the sanctuary discovered at the highest point of the hill, in a prominent position, to which naturally attached because elkotan the attention of the pilgrim. The rock has been carved in a large seat (fig. 13) to back that ends in a semicircular end, and three tall and width terraces, which are obviously not being true to scale. In the eastern part of the rocky volume there are two niches, and a groove for receiving probably altar for sacrifices or deposit tenders to the goddess.Recalling similar constructions holy Mother goddess on the opposite coast of Asia Minor, we would say that here is a monumental 'throne' of the goddess, analogous to those found eg the so-called "city of Midas" and Kalehisar. Two similar, much smaller rocky 'thrones' identified two more points in the hill shrine. The presence of this type of monuments in Samian sanctuary of the Mother Goddess is a direct import from the neighboring Asia Minor, mainly from Phrygia, where there early as the 7th century. B.C.The 'throne' implies in this case the presence of the same goddess, which the faithful envisions enthroned, and it is likely during devotional ceremonies to adapt to a portable throne statue, which would contribute to the visual realization of the vision of believers .

The case for the critical importance of the rocky monument in the whole structure of western sacred reinforces, I think, monumental scale that was found at a distance of 12 meters approximately east of the "throne" and seems to lead to the level where he was.Apart from the impressive large width, on the north side there is attached a smaller scale with the upper terraces in proportion, it seems, one to two large-scale (fig. 14). The stairs lead to a plateau carved with frame (chassis) with clearly visible quadrilaterals carvings on reception altars or pedestals. Three niches are carved on the south wall of the stairs and in front of the rock has been carefully smoothed forming large flat "square" (fig. 15), which lead to the two smaller scales on the east side. Pits that are carved carefully to the north and south side of the "square" seems collecting water, which must be run from the natural crevices and perhaps used the sacred purifications. The recent uncovering ancient walls of the eastern part of the "square" confirmed our initial assumptions, that the western temple must have been the oldest, from the Archaic period, which later expanded north, throughout the mountainside 6 .

This important set of complete two more clusters niches for B. large-scale, one of which survives eroded relief of a seated goddess (fig. 16), the only one found throughout the western shrine, while above the northernmost cluster formed another plateau (platform) with frame and large rectangular cutting for accommodating brick, statue or altar.

Conclusions

Completing the description of Samian outdoor shrines of Mother Goddess, the study of which-we should note-is still at an early stage, it is worth pausing to some key conclusions, without limitation as to their importance for the study of ancient Samos.The very extent, unique so far sanctuaries of its kind in Greece, documenting for the first time the paramount importance of the cult of Cybele in Samos Town 7 . It is known that the first shrines of the goddess in Phrygia, early 7th BC century. mainly isolated rocky stepped facades and monuments or thrones, were usually in mountainous and remote areas. The goddess lived in the mountains and the loyal visitors to its habitat. The

sanctuaries of later periods, as in Phocaea, Ephesus and Samos impress with large area and are either outside the city walls, either inside (as partly in the case of Phocaea) but outside the residential fabric, as in Samos. However, we should bear in mind that in terms of Samos, the oldest of the archaic period is little or no thought and it would be interesting to investigate prospectively the relationship, eg the oldest sanctuary in pre- Archaic fortification of the city, it is proved that it existed. Problem even perhaps it should be the fact that so far there seems to exist a similar shrine on the eastern side of the city, closer to the coast of Asia Minor, where the cult of the goddess passed, as we said, in Greece, with the exception of two individual niches outside the eastern side of the wall.In the event that future research will reveal more in the region shows that the sanctuaries were so arranged that they would protect the city from the three inland sides (west, north and east), while the fourth is washed by the sea.

The dating of the sacred remains problematic, because, as is known, we can not rely on the typology of the niches, which identifies with certainty a particular chronological period, nor the stylistic characteristics of the few surviving in niches carved reliefs much worn from long exposure to the weather.

Mobile relief that have been studied, few in number compared with the extent of shrines belonging to a Late Archaic (see note 5), as mentioned above, and the rest period during the Hellenistic era [1] 8, but however the exact their origin remains unknown. However the first findings and comparative studies in the western sanctuary, but one which has just begun the excavation, we presume that it is the oldest of the sacred, which over the centuries was extended to the northern fringes of the city. If all the shrines were dedicated to the Mother Goddess is not yet fully documented, but the position of the western sanctuary is ideally selected between the Artemision to N. and Thesmophoros to north, since it is known that the cults of these three women gods are interlinked. You should also bear in mind that ancient Ionia and Samos are many are the Ionian cities on the opposite coast of Asia Minor spent extensive outdoor shrines to the patron Mother Goddess Cybele.

These concerns raise questions certainly remain currently open, but the latter will hopefully provide answers to complete the study of the sacred in order to have a more accurate picture of the topography of the ancient city of Samos.

Note: This article was published in issue No. 12 (August-November 2003) of the journal Quintessence.

Notes:

1. See K. Tsakos, Stadt und Nekropolen: Samos in der archaischen Epoche (6 Jh.), IN

Samos - Die Kasseler Grabung 1894 (Kassel 1996), s.123-131. Two. See Gr. Shipley, A history of Samos (1987), p 113 ff Three. See "Quintessence", v. 1, pp. 68-77. 4. The first presentation of all the sanctuaries, as supplemented by the recent research done by the signing in 2001 an announcement during the conference in Lyon (France), see V. Yannouli, Les sanctuaries de Cybèle à Samos, Proceedings Les cultes locaux dans les mondes grec et romain "(Lyon, June 2001), in press.

5. For illustrations of Cybele reliefs, see E. Vikela, Bemerkungen zur Ikonographie und Bildtypologie der Meter-Kybelereliefs: Abstammung und Eigenständigkeit, AM 116, 2001, p 67-123. 6. The recently opinions of a few scholars mentioned in Samia sanctuaries of Cybele converged to a chronology of the holy above in classical times (see f. Naumann, Die Ikonographie der Kybele in der phrygischen und der griechischen Kunst, MDAI (I),

Beiheft 28 (1983), p 217), although there is a relief of the goddess dating to the Late Archaic period (see B. freyer-Schauenburg, Bildwerke der archaischen Zeit und des strengen Stils, SAMOS XI (1974), No. 87, pl. 73). Following the recent findings it is evident now that the Samian sanctuary was built along the lines of those of the 6th

century.

that abound in Asia Minor, where that very period the worship of the goddess

passes in Greece.

 

7. By contrast, in neighboring Ionia large scale outdoor shrines of Mother Goddess are many, for instance, we should mention the case of Phocaea, the respective shrines which

are very similar to the Samian, not two of them are, as in Samos, intramural city, see O. Özyigit - A. Erdogan, Les sanctuaires de Phocée à la lumière des dernières fouilles.In: Les cultes des cités phocéennes. Actes du colloque international organisé par

le Centre Camille-Jullian (Aix-en-Provence/Marseille, 1999), p 17-23. 8. R. Horn, Hellenistische Bildwerke auf Samos, Samos XII (1972), nr. 84, 84a-f, 174a-d, Beil. 12, 26, pl. 59.