Egypt breakthrough: Remains of Greek-Roman town discovered in Alexandria

Egypt: Archaeologists in Saqqara uncover coffin

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The remains of the residential and commercial town were found during excavation work in the Shattabi area. They discovered around 700 artefacts, including plates of different shapes and sizes, and a lot of tools that were used for industrial activities. The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities has said that preliminary studies on the remains of the uncovered suburb of the city showed that the main street was linked up by other smaller sub streets which were connected by a sewage network. 

Evidence suggests that this network was used in the town for a very long period of time.

Ibrahim Mustafa, Minister of the General Secretary of the Higher Archaeology Council, said that this discovery indicates it was most likely heavily linked to trade movement in Alexandria, as well as for fishing and the associated tool industry.

It highlights the various activities that were undertaken at the external walls of the Egyptian capital in the Greek and Roman era, which included places for travellers and visitors to the city.

The excavator works on this site took up to nine months to complete.

Remains

They discovered around 700 artefacts (Image: Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, Egypt)

Sculpture

This collection included statues of idols (Image: Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, Egypt)

It also led to the discovery of water wells carved into the rock, and a large network of tunnel tanks that were covered in a layer of pink slumber that were used to store wells. 

They found over 40 wells and tanks in total, which contained a variety of pots, statues and trails that show how productive and intense the suburb may have been at the time. 

Dr Khaled Abu Al-Hamad, General Manager, Alexandria, has said that some studies have shown that the discovered suburb also had many shops.

Experts believe these were used for selling the pots, as well as manufacturing statues of idols, legendary heroes and emperors to sell.

READ MORE: Egypt archaeologists in furious debate over Tutankhamun’s mask

Egypt remains

the main street was linked up by other smaller sub streets which were connected by a sewage network. (Image: Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, Egypt)

This collection included idols like legendary hero Alexander the Great, who was the King of the ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon and was a member of the Agread dynasty, born in around 356 BC and died in 323 BC in Babylon.

Remains of a basin with a compartment were also found which may have been devoted to the idols Athens and Dimitra.

Dr Abu Al-Hamad also said that remains of mixtures, coins, weights and fishing nets were found too.

Work is now underway to document the site using photography and modern topography techniques.

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Egypt remains

Plates of different shapes and size were discovered. (Image: Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, Egypt)

Egypt remains

Water wells carved into rock, and a large network of tunnel tanks was found. (Image: Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, Egypt)

Alexandria is the third-largest city in Egypt and the seventh-largest city in Africa. 

It was a major economic centre during the Roman and Greek empires and remains so to this day. 

It is known as the “Bride of the Mediterranean” by locals.

Alexandria was founded in 331 BC by Alexander the Great during his conquest of the Achaemenid Empire.

A village named Rhacotis existed at the location and grew into the Egyptian quarter of Alexandria.

The city grew rapidly to become an important centre of Hellenistic civilisation and remained the capital of Ptolemaic Egypt and Roman and Byzantine Egypt for almost 1,000 years.

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