Introduction

SUMMER 2017: July 8 - July 22

Participation in the excavation of the Ancient city of Thouria near Kalamata in Messenia (Peloponnese, Greece)

Thouria was the Homeric Antheia according to Pausanias or Aipeia according to Strabo. Excavations have revealed an impressive Mycenean necropolis consisting of at least fifteen tholos tombs. Since the eighth century B.C.Ε., when the Lacedaemonians dominated Messenia, the area acquired the name Thouria and it became the most important “perioikos polis” of western Messenia.

Thouria is mentioned by Thucydides in his account of the dramatic revolt of the Messenian helots against Sparta in 464 B.C.Ε.. The inhabitants of Thouria sided with the helots and suffered the consequences. After the foundation of Messene in 369 B.C.Ε., Thouria gained its independence from Sparta and in later times, it was given back to the Spartans by Augustus.

The excavations at the Classical-Hellenistic site begun in 2007 by the 38th Ephorate of Pre-historic and Classical Antiquities under the Director of the Ephorate Dr. Xeni Arapogianni. The excavations so far have brought to light significant remains of public and sacred buildings (www.ancientthouriaexcavation.gr).