Europe

Ancient Greek city Tenea found by archaeologists

Aerial shots of archaeological site in southern Peloponnese, Greece Image copyright Greece culture ministry
Image caption The outline of a housing settlement has been discovered

Archaeologists in Greece believe they have found the lost city of Tenea, thought to have been founded by captives of the legendary Trojan War.

They said they had discovered the remains of a housing settlement, jewellery, coins and several burial sites in the southern Peloponnese area.

Until now, archaeologists had a rough idea of where the city might have been located but had no tangible proof.

The items date from 4th Century BC to Roman times.

Excavation work around the modern-day village of Chiliomodi began in 2013, and "proof of the existence" of Tenea emerged in work carried out in September and early October this year, officials said.

Carefully-constructed walls as well as clay, stone and marble floors were uncovered. Around 200 rare coins, including one designed to pay for the journey to an afterlife, were also found.

Seven graves - including one containing the remains of a woman and child - were unearthed, adorned with vases and jewellery.

Lead archaeologist Elena Korka told the Associated Press that the discoveries suggested the citizens of Tenea had been "remarkably affluent".

She said the city would have been located on a key trade route between the main cities of Corinth and Argos in the northern Peloponnese.

"(The city) had distinctive pottery shapes with eastern influences, maintained contacts with both east and west... and had its own thinking, which, to the extent that it could, shaped its own policies," she told the AP.

Little is known about Tenea, but legend has it that it was founded by Trojans who had been captured by King Agamemnon of Mycenae during his war with Troy in the 12th or 13th Century BC.

The city is thought to have flourished during the Roman era but may have been abandoned by the 4th Century AD.

Ms Korka said more details about the city will emerge as excavations continue over the coming years.

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