Funeral mourning representation (left) and Maenad mask (right) found after excavations at the Royal Necropolis of Aegae, Vergina [Credit: ΑΠΕ-ΜΠΕ/ΥΠΠΟ/STR]
The director of the 17th Ephorate of Prehistoric and Classical Antiquities Angeliki Kottaridi believes that the five tombs discovered in Vergina could belong to members of the Temenid dynast or even King Cassander himself. Mrs. Kottaridi made the bold revelation at the Thursday afternoon conference at the University of Thessaloniki.
Cassander was one of Alexander the Great’s successors and husband to his sister, Thessaloniki, who established the Antipatrid dynasty. King Cassander became known for his hostility towards the memory of Alexander the Great and he is credited with changing the name of Therma to Thessaloniki.
Gold coins (left) and ring (right) found at
the Royal Necropolis of Aegae, Vergina [Credit: ΑΠΕ-ΜΠΕ/ΥΠΠΟ/STR]
Mrs. Kottaridi revealed that despite having been plundered, the tombs were found to be in a relatively good condition, evident by the remains of impressive funeral pyres, with multiple tributes recalling the Homeric epics.
In total 20 tombs of the Temenid dynasty have been discovered in the area, dating back to the 6th century BCE, until the early Hellenistic era (4th-3rd century BCE). The current archeological digs of the 17th Ephorate in Vergina are being funded by the NSRF.
Attic lekythoi found at the Royal Necropolis of Aegae, Vergina [Credit: ΑΠΕ-ΜΠΕ/ΥΠΠΟ/STR]