Φάγρης : η αρχαία πόλη και το νεκροταφείοPart of : Το Αρχαιολογικό Έργο στη Μακεδονία και στη Θράκη ; Vol.10, No.Β, 1996, pages 835-846
Phagres : the ancient city and its cemetery
“Xerxes next passed the Pierian forts, one of which is called Phagres and the other Pergamus”. In those words, Herodotus (VII, 112) describes the advance of Xerxes and his army through Pieris, naming two of its cities.According to Thucydides (II, 99, 3), Phagres was the most important of the cities founded by the Pierians when they were forced to abandon what we now call Pieria in the mid-seventh century, under the pressure of the Macedonians. They returned to their former homeland in Thrace, settling between the River Strymon, Mount Pangaion and the sea, in the region which they themselves called the Pierian Valley.These references and the information provided by later ancient authors in connection with the site of the city led nineteenth-century travellers and rese - archers to place ancient Phagres in the vicinity of the modern village of Orfani.The excavations of the last ten years have provided support for this hypo thesis, since they now allow us with certainity to identify Phagres with the an cient city discovered on the large natural hill to the NE of the village of Orfani and known by the name Kanoni.Unfortunately, excavations in the ancient city have only just begun and have not yet provided us with clear information about its form, its urban fabric, etc. In addition, the site has been extensively destroyed in modern times.Information about life in the city is to be drawn principally from a large number of cylindrical pits hewn out of the naturally soft marl of the hill. These pits, which the inhabitants of Phagres dug in the basements of their houses, probably for storage purposes, contained considerable quantities of plain, black and black-figure pottery.The results of the excavations to date lead us to the conclusion that Phagres was an important ancient city, controlling the west entrance to the Pierian Valley and located close to the sea. The city flourished towards the end of the sixth century BC, at which time it enjoyed close commercial and cultural rela - tions with the major centres of the east and north Aegean and with Athens.Early in the fifth century BC, the city suffered severe destruction, but it co ntinued to exist throughout the Classical and Hellenistic periods and into the Roman era.In the summer of 1994, a rescue excavation revealed part of the Classical cemetery of ancient Phagres, which lies on the NE side of the foot of the hill on which the ancient city stood. In the tombs (the overwhelming majority of which were cremations), the dead were accompanied by rich grave goods: vases, figu rines, weapons and gold and silver jewellery. Of particular importance for the research project was a copper coin found in one of the tombs, which for the first time confirmed the name of the city as the letters “ΦΑΓΡ” can be clearly disce rned on its obverse.
νεκροταφεία, Καβάλα, συνέδρια