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TOMB B

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 Tomb B is the second largest tomb in terms of external dimensions, measuring approx. 8.0 x 8.0 m., and also second largest (almost equal in size to Tomb Δ) in terms of the internal dimensions of its burial chamber, which measures 3.44 x 2.56 m. and 2.42 m. high. It was discovered a few metres to the north-west of Tomb A and at a slightly lower level. In terms of its method of construction, it differs greatly from Tomb A, since here stone blocks have been placed only around the perimeter of the burial chamber and do not extend into its lateral walls. They consist of two or three successive courses of stone, which at many points have been disturbed and plundered. There is no doubt that this perimetric structure served as the euthynteria or base for a building of worship constructed above the tomb at ground-level. The burial chamber, however, remained an independent unit and because of its small size preserved the stone slabs of its flat roof, which measure 3.41 m. long x 0.45 m. wide x 0.83 m. high and were supported by a wooden beam, as can be seen from the sockets in which it rested. Ancient grave-robbers entered the tomb through a hole opened in one of these roof slabs, which was 0.83 m. thick. These slabs were connected to each other externally by means of Z-shaped lead-coated iron clamps. The courses of masonry on the floor of the burial chamber – part of which bore a glossy red plaster – indicate the existence of a couch. Very close to the external surface of the tomb’s west wall vivid traces of a pyre have been found, from which two iron spearheads and sherds vitrified by the fire have been collected. The only remains of the precious grave goods that were deposited in this monumental tomb are the fragments of at least 12 alabaster alabastra, a few fragments of bone with engraved decoration, pottery sherds with vivid scorch marks and four small gold rosettes.  

 

   The tomb can be dated to the second half of the 5th century BC. The southern section of an earlier edifice on the same site was destroyed in order to construct the tomb. The ground-plan of this earlier edifice, which was probably used for burials and worship, encompasses Tomb Δ. 

 

 

 Dr Georgia Karamitrou – Mentesidi

 

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