Sunday, August 25, 2013


OFFICIALS in Greece have cautioned against believing claims that the Lost Tomb of Alexander the Great has been found north of Athens.

Greece's Ministry of Culture says it is too early to speculate whether an ancient mound currently being excavated in the north contains the remains of Alexander.

Greek news media and Internet blogs claim a tomb unearthed by archaeologists in Amplipolis, Serres, 600 kilometers north of Athens, is the royal tomb of Roxane, the wife and son of 4th Century BC king Alexander the Great. 

Some reports even say the tomb may be of Alexander himself.

"The finding of Amphipolis is certainly very important, but linking the site with the identification of historical figures without scientific justification is risky," the Culture Ministry said in a press release.
The warrior king has always been thought to have been buried in Egypt. But experts have now become excited after they uncovered a marble-faced wall dating from the time.

The structure measures an impressive wall measuring 500 metres long and three metres high, which archaeologists believe could contain a royal grave.

The site near ancient Amphipolis lies 370 miles north of Athens.

Site archaeologist Aikaterini Peristeri has voiced hopes of finding 'a significant individual or individuals' within.

A Culture Ministry statement has enthused that the archaeologists have partly excavated a mound that has yielded a 'very remarkable' marble-faced wall from the late 4th Century BC.

Experts believe the ancient artificial mound could contain the remains of the king, or is at least an important royal Macedonian grave.

The news has captured the Greek public's imaginations and many people are hopeful the site will solve the mystery of where Alexander the Great rests.

However, Greece's Culture Ministry has warned against "overbold" speculation that archaeologists are close to uncovering the king's remains.

There are several stories about where Alexander the Great was buried after he suddenly died of a fever at the age of just 32 - although some believe he was poisoned.

History tells that his body was laid to rest in a rock crystal and gold sarcophagus filled with honey. It is said to have been taken to Memphis before Alexandria in Egypt where it remained until late Antiquity.

Famous Romans Pompey, Augustus and Julius Caesar are all said to have visited his tomb in Alexandria, with Caligula reportedly swiping the warrior's breastplate for a souvenir.

Alexander's crystal sarcophagus appeared in a key scene of the 1963 epic "Cleopatra" starring Elizabeth Taylor in the title role and Rex Harrison as Caesar (photo at right).

It is possible that Hadrian and Antinous visited the Tomb of Alexander ... assuming it was located in Alexandria and still intact when they visited the city in 130 AD.

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