Monday, November 15, 2010

Zeugma's Plundered Mosaics

Archaeological excavations at the ancient Zeugma started in the late 1980s, although it was already known in the early twentieth century by locals and by some visiting Europeans that at the site some Roman mosaics and inscriptions were discovered. By the 1960s, some locals discovered the monetary value of the mosaics, and they have been involved in illegal excavations for the international market. Archaeologists who began excavation at Zeugma have reported that many of the mosaics found in Zeugma had been damaged by such illegal excavations. Archeologists are suspicious that many of the Roman mosaics in various museum catalogues, whose place of origin is described as “East Mediterranean,” or “said to be from East Turkey,” or “near Syria,” may probably be excavated from Zeugma. One notable example of the damage of this illegal activity is the mosaic of Dionysus and Ariadne. In 1992, a local guard for Zeugma discovered a tunnel, which led to the remains of a Roman villa. Archaeologists based at the Gaziantep Museum excavated the site and uncovered a mosaic depicting the wedding of Dionysus and Ariadne. They decided to preserve it in situ. However, a large part of this mosaic was cut out by looters on 15 June 1998 , and has been missing since then. Gaziantep Museum exhibits this mosaic as it is to raise the awareness against looting and illegal trafficking of artifacts.






6 comments:

  1. These are Greek mosaics with Greek inscriptions on them and depicting Greek Mythology and located in the ancient Greek city of Zeugma (Greek word) founded by Greek Seleukos Nikator. I repeat the 'Greek' word because 1) you are allergic to it 2) you have not mentioned it once, which is ridiculous when the subject is about an ancient Greek ruin 3) you mention names from Greek mythology as thought they are something else. Bottom line: you don't know what the hell is going on.

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    1. Depends on what is meant by Greek. I doubt that the 21st century Greece is related to the Seleucids or to the Ptolemies anymore than today's Turkey is to the Hittites or to the Ottomans. No offense--I have no allergies :) And do tell us what IS going on.

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    2. Depends on what is meant by Greek. I doubt that the 21st century Greece is related to the Seleucids or to the Ptolemies anymore than today's Turkey is to the Hittites or to the Ottomans. No offense--I have no allergies :) And do tell us what IS going on.

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    3. Depends on what is meant by Greek. I doubt that the 21st century Greece is related to the Seleucids or to the Ptolemies anymore than today's Turkey is to the Hittites or to the Ottomans. No offense--I have no allergies :) And do tell us what IS going on.

      Delete
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