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Ancient Macedonia

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Female figurine
Clay female figurine from Aiane, mid-6th century BC, Aiani, Archaeological Museum.

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Female figurine
Mid-6th century BC

Aiane, situated south of present-day Kozane, was the capital of the kingdom of Elimeia in Upper Macedonia. Extensive ruins of a city inhabited from prehistoric times to the 1st century BC were discovered and are under excavation on a hill in the region.

The city was built on the free system of town-planning, on successive stepped terraces, and had large portico structures possibly for public use, a circular cistern and other installations for water supply, as well as numerous private houses. Most buildings were split on several levels due to the slope of the terrain.

Round the hill there were extensive cemeteries and clusters of graves dating from the late Bronze Age to the end of the Hellenistic period. In the cemetery of the Archaic and Classical periods, chamber tombs and cist graves were found as well as a 'heroon', which must have belonged to members of the highest social class of the kingdom of Elimeia.

The wealth of grave goods in the tombs, and other finds in the city area attest the existence of commercial and cultural relations with the rest of Greece and the flourishing of metal, figurine and pottery workshops. The discovery of Aiane, already a structured city in Classical times, refutes theories of cultural isolation of Upper Macedonia at this early period.

See Also
Civilization - Ceramics in Antiquity
Metalwork


Macedonian Heritage
Content courtesy Ekdotike Athenon S.A.