Abstract: Argilos: a Greek Colony in Thracian Territory
Since 1992, Greek and Canadian archaeologists have been excavating one of the earliest Greek colonies in the Northern Aegean. Founded in 655/654 B.C., Argilos rapidly became a flourishing city which benefited from its trading activities in a region rich in gold and silver mines. The excavations have uncovered surprisingly well-preserved houses and public buildings, some with walls up to 4 meters tall. The rich finds attest to its relations with the Thracian tribes, the Macedonians, the Persians, and other colonial Greeks in the region. The economic life of the city suffered from the foundation of the Athenian colony of Amphipolis in 437 B.C. and was finally destroyed by Philipp II in 357 B.C. Historians thought that the city was then abandoned, but our excavations have brought to light an important agricultural settlement on the acropolis, which dates to the years 350-200 B.C. The relatively short lifespan of this colony has helped preserve its early architecture, which offers a unique possibility to study the development of colonial urbanization. This lecture will present the discoveries made on the site.