Ομαδικός τάφος από το βόρειο νεκροταφείο της αρχαίας ΠύδναςPart of : Το Αρχαιολογικό Έργο στη Μακεδονία και στη Θράκη ; Vol.14, No.1, 2000, pages 385-394
A mass grave in the north cemetery of ancient Pydna
The continuing rescue excavations carried out by the 16th Directorate of Prehistoric and Classical Antiquities early in 2001 in the N cemetery of ancient Pydna yielded a very important find for the history of ancient Macedonia: a mass grave of the 4th century BC.The mass burial involved at least 120 bodies, which had been flung into a rectangular pit with a N-S orientation. According to the stratigraphical evidence, they were buried in 4 separate periods. The skeletons in all periods had been carelessly thrown into the pit without any mortuary ministrations. This disorderly manner of disposing of the dead suggests that it was a hasty process primarily intended to get rid of the bodies. The skeletons were not oriented in any particular direction, and their various postures within the pit clearly indicate that they were carelessly flung into it. According to excavational observations and stratigraphical evidence, in each period the bodies were thrown in not all together, but one by one.All age groups are represented here (infants, children, adolescents, and adults) and both sexes. This might suggest that they belonged to groups with family ties. One notable case was that of an approximately nine-month fetus, which was found in its mother's pelvis.Until a detailed macroscopic and microscopic examination of the skeletal remains has been completed, we cannot reach firm conclusions about the pathological lesions in specific individuals. So far, we have found no traces of injuries which might have been violently inflicted and thus constitute a cause of death.The archaeological finds from this mass grave were rather few in relation to the large number of individuals it contained. Apart from a very small amount of pottery, they fall into 2 categories: 1) objects connected with the clothing of the dead, and 2) iron fetters, which are of particular importance with regard to the identity of the people who were wearing them. There are a variety of fetters for different parts of the body, and they were worn by 4 people in all. We believe that a systematic study of the skeletal material from this mass grave will help us to interpret a find that is so important for the region of Macedonia.
Περιέχει εικόνες και γραφήματα