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Subterranean grave complexes at Korakonero

Last Update: Sep 2019

Ancient necropolis of Rhodes

Archaeological site RODOS , DODEKANISSOS , GREECE

Subterranean grave complexes at Korakonero - Overview

  Outside the boundary of the ancient city, on the southeast side of the town of Rhodes, stretch the ancient cemeteries. One of the most important is the group of burial complexes at Korakonero, dating to the late Hellenistic and Roman times. Over this period a great variety can be seen in the funerary architecture. The tombs, which as a rule are cut into the soft poros rock, are either cist graves or, in the case of the more luxurious ones, consist of subterranean chambers with architectural fronts (arched colonnades or columns supporting architraves with metopes and triglyphs mimicking the temple facades). Within them the dead were placed in cists cut into the walls of the chambers. It is not known whether these complexes belonged to wealthy families or to religious groups. The area was originally used for a quarry.
  The grave complexes were discovered and restored by the Italian Archaeological School before the end of the 2nd World War. The altars and stelai were found in situ and erected by the Italians, probably correctly, on the bases on top of the subterranean burial chambers.
  The most important monuments on the site are:
- Tomb complex laid out around a peristyle court with colonnades.
- Relief depicting figures carved on the three sides of the vertically hewn rock, thought to be a funerary sanctuary.
- Burial complexes hewn into the vertical faces of the rocks along the ancient road connecting the city with countryside. On the vertical east side of the rock rectangular tombs for interments alternate with small cists for cinerary vases and ossuaries, rectangular recesses for grave stelai and complete chambers containing tombs.
- Burial complexes laid out above-ground with bases and foundations for cylindrical funerary altars.
- Complexes of subterranean chambers
- Built tholos tombs

The text is cited from The Hellenic Ministry of Culture & Tourism WebPage

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Ancient monuments • Tombs / Hellenistic period, 323-31 BC / Roman period, 31 BC-AD 324

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