A team of archaeologists recently discovered that the Thessaly plain is hiding the ruins of an ancient Greek city. The site was first discovered 200 years ago, but since Thessaly is not a common reference in ancient texts, Greek authorities decided to divert funds to more important research efforts.
The Thessaly ruins were not a subject of interest until a group of archaeologists from Bournemouth University and Gothenburg University decided to explore the site using ground-penetrating radar. It seems that the theory according to which the ruins belonged to a “backwater” village is more than false.
The scientists that formed the Vlochós Archaeological Project discovered that the plain harbors a once prosperous ancient Greek city. The hidden ruins include a town square, a street grid, plenty of pottery specimens, and various coins.
Researchers have not started excavations yet. A sample of surface historical artifacts like pottery pieces and coins were taken to the VAP museum where they will be displayed for the public.
The team was sure that there was more to the Thessaly ruins than initially met the eye. Even though the city was rarely mentioned in various literary sources, its proximity to Macedonia made it a focal trading spot.
According to a Boston University professor of classical studies, the ancient world relied on trade. There were plenty of fixed points where traders and caravans stopped to exchange merchandise. Some great writers from the Greek antiquity spoke of lands where people lived half a year in the dark and half in the light. These are not just stories; they are exaggerated accounts of fjords.
While some places were accurately described, others were embellished. It is hard to keep track of all the exotic or traditional cities that the ancient Greeks spoke about. It is also very easy to oversee something due to it having an overly zealous description.
That is how Greek authorities managed to oversee the Thessalian ruins, considering them just the remains of a dusty, forgotten village.
Some historians believe that Vlochós may have been the exact opposite of a forgotten village. Screenings had shown that the city was most prosperous during the third and fourth century, the same time when Alexander was ruling Macedonia with an iron fist.
They also believe that the town was abandoned when the Romans started pillaging the area.
More details will be uncovered in 2017 when scientists will return to the site and gather more information about the ancient Greek city.
Image source: Wikipedia