Cultural Postcards + Turkey

Near East: Search to find missing pieces of Greek statue started
A Greek statue was unearthed during an illegal excavation in Turkey's western province of Kütahya’s Simav district last April. The statue, which is 610 kg in weight and 2.8 meters in height, is thought to be in the image of the goddess Demeter, from Greek mythology.

Search to find missing pieces of Greek statue started
The Demeter statue unearthed in Simav is 610 kg in weight
 and 2.8 meters in height [Credit: Hurriyet]

Recently, the Kütahya Museum Directorate kicked off archaeological excavations in the same area in collaboration with the Simav Municipality, in order to search for other pieces from the statue.

The excavations, which have been ongoing for three days, have so far unearthed a cremation center, where the dead people were burned and buried. This center is estimated to date back to the Roman era.

Kütahya Museum Director Metin Türktüzün said the excavations were going on an area of 40 square meters, and some more pieces from the Demeter statue had been discovered.

Search to find missing pieces of Greek statue started
Workers dig at the site where the statue of Demeter was
 illegally excavated [Credit: Hurriyet]

“In this area there is a structure with a niche. We found three meters of the wall of this structure, but have not been able to reach the other wall yet … Since treasure hunters caused destruction in the region, we have not been able to identify the entrance yet. We have unearthed a few more pieces of the Greek goddess Demeter. We don’t know the relation of Demeter to this place yet,” Türktüzün said.

He added that they thought the structure was a religious site, as they had found oil lamps and burned bones there.

“The structure probably dates back to the 2nd and 3rd century. The Demeter statue dates back to this era too, and it was brought here from one of the other nearby ancient cities. As it is a first-class statue, it is not possible that it was made in this region … We also expect to find other pieces of the statue,” Türktüzün said.

Source: Hurriyet Daily News [July 08, 2014]

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