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Ancient city revealed by looters in central Turkey

An early Byzantine church is being revealed during excavations in a 2,200-year-old ancient city which was discovered by treasure hunters in the central Anatolian province of Kirsehir’s Cicekdagi district.

Ancient city revealed by looters in central Turkey
The ancient city came to light in Buyuk Teflek village in central Anatolia after
looters had excavated the area [Credit: Hurriyet]
The ancient city came to light in Buyuk Teflek village when historical artifacts smugglers excavated the area. Dating back to the second century B.C., the ancient city has a bath as well as other artifacts.

Kirsehir Museum, Director Adnan Guclu said that they had revealed a significant historic heritage during the excavations. He said that excavations started last year in April, adding that they would continue the excavations for two more months this year.

Speaking about how the ancient city was unearthed, Guclu said, “With the notification of law-enforcement officers and the village headman Eyub Baran, we came to the village and made examinations. We entered the hole opened by treasure hunters and obtained information about the size of the ancient city. Then we discovered that this place was a significant place of settlement and a bath from the Roman era. The furnace of the bath was the first place we examined. It was still strong.
These works took six months and during this process we unearthed an 800-square-meter area, a big part of the structure. This is a small bath and we think that it was a business place.”

Excavations start 

Guclu said that following the excavations, the lost Graeco-Roman city, which is estimated to date back to the second century B.C., was registered as a first degree archaeological site. He said that they also thought that the bath had been turned into a church.

“Those who donated to his church were buried underground of the church. We found 21 male graves in this place and worked there, too. In Orthodox Christianity, there was a tradition that the men, who donate to a church, were buried there,” he said.

Guclu said that works had still been continuing and it was not possible to excavate and unearth the complex structures within a short time. “It will take too much to reveal the whole ancient city,” he said.

Source: Hurriyet Daily News [November 18, 2013]

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