The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipolis

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Efstathios
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by Efstathios »

This does not explain why such a magnificent tomb, unless it were originally prepared for someone else who would no longer required?
There was a blog post that said that according to Diodorus, Alexander wanted to build a bigger and more glorious tomb for his father. If this is true (i don't have Diodorus' source in front of me) then maybe Crateros or Perdicas or someone did built the tomb in order to get Philip's remains there but eventually for some reason they didn't. So they used the tomb for Roxanne and Alexander the 4th. This is just a scenario that fits with your hypothesis if Diodorus actually said that.
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by Nikas »

Efstathios wrote:
This does not explain why such a magnificent tomb, unless it were originally prepared for someone else who would no longer required?
There was a blog post that said that according to Diodorus, Alexander wanted to build a bigger and more glorious tomb for his father. If this is true (i don't have Diodorus' source in front of me) then maybe Crateros or Perdicas or someone did built the tomb in order to get Philip's remains there but eventually for some reason they didn't. So they used the tomb for Roxanne and Alexander the 4th. This is just a scenario that fits with your hypothesis if Diodorus actually said that.
I am going off pure memory here as I am currently on a hurried coffee break, but I seem to recall Alexander's plans for a grander tomb for Philip were part of the plans still to be completed, along with his Arabian and North African expeditions as found at the time of his death, so probably construction would not have begun as the Diadochi would not have followed through on that either in their murderous carve up of Alexander's conquests. Also, would Philip still not remained in Aegae?
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by Paralus »

Diod. 18.4.5-6:

A tomb for his father Philip was to be constructed to match the greatest of the pyramids of Egypt, buildings which some persons count among the seven greatest works of man. When these memoranda had been read, the Macedonians, although they applauded the name of Alexander, nevertheless saw that the projects were extravagant and impracticable and decided to carry out none of those that have been mentioned.
And, so, it was not built. Nearchos is last heard of in service with Demetrios at Gaza. That was in 312 and, if is relatively coeval with Alexander, is in his late forties. It's possible that he dropped out into 'retirement' but I'd find that unlikely given he was one of the One Eye's philoi. Agesilaos' suggestion of the Antigonids is the most likely.
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by Alexias »

I am a bit confused. The original reports suggested that there were 3 chambers, which I took to mean that there were 3 burial chambers. However, the latest press reports seem to be refering to what is beyond the lintel as chamber 3 ie the space between the sphinxes and the caryatids is chamber 1 and chamber 2 is the space between the caryatids and the lintel.

They are already down to ground level in chamber 1 and have not unearthed any significant finds as far as i know (ie no grave goods, coffin or wall paintings). There were also no gates or doors below the sphinxes. Therefore chamber 1 simply appears to be an entrance passageway.

I don't think they have yet got down to ground level in Chamber 2, but again - as far as I can see - there are no doors beneath the caryatids. Chamber 2 therefore wouldn't seem to qualify as an antechamber, let alone a burial chamber. It therefore looks as if we have a single burial, which is most likely a single adult, not any kind of family vault.

Does anyone know if the soundings of the mound revealed lateral chambers off chamber 3? Or anything beyond chamber 3?

Also does anyone have any idea of measurements? Is chamber 3 positioned in the centre of the mound? Is there room for further chambers?
Edit

I am also confused about the dating of the sealing walls. If they are instead of doors, isn't this an important stylistic development, and should parallels be looked for? If they were put in later to prevent looting, that argues there was still someone about who cared, so that might imply it is the burial of a local.
Last edited by Alexias on Sat Sep 13, 2014 11:41 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by Alexias »

Jeanne Reames has made some interesting points here http://alexandersarmy.livejournal.com/2 ... 7#t1428527, suggesting that the tomb could be late Republic and might even be Brutus.
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by Zebedee »

Alexias wrote:I am a bit confused. The original reports suggested that there were 3 chambers, which I took to mean that there were 3 burial chambers. However, the latest press reports seem to be refering to what is beyond the lintel as chamber 3 ie the space between the sphinxes and the caryatids is chamber 1 and chamber 2 is the space between the caryatids and the lintel.

They are already down to ground level in chamber 1 and have not unearthed any significant finds as far as i know (ie no grave goods, coffin or wall paintings). There were also no gates or doors below the sphinxes. Therefore chamber 1 simply appears to be an entrance passageway.

I don't think they have yet got down to ground level in Chamber 2, but again - as far as I can see - there are no doors beneath the caryatids. Chamber 2 therefore wouldn't seem to qualify as an antechamber, let alone a burial chamber. It therefore looks as if we have a single burial, which is most likely a single adult, not any kind of family vault.

Does anyone know if the soundings of the mound revealed lateral chambers off chamber 3? Or anything beyond chamber 3?

Also does anyone have any idea of measurements? Is chamber 3 positioned in the centre of the mound? Is there room for further chambers?
The published seismic topography is reproduced here. Note the scale is 25m x 25m squares. If the assumption of major stone structures being at each H is correct then there's a lot going on within the mound. The door to chamber 3 is perhaps 10m from the entrance.
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by Efstathios »

And a teacher of archaeology in Athens also said that judging from the Karyatides' style the tomb might be Roman, and it may be for the battle at phillipi. Every archaeologist and researcher has his own hypothesis.
The chambers that they are excavating now are essentially the corridor as i see it, that leads to the 3 chambers. But i could be wrong.
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by system1988 »

Alexias wrote:I am a bit confused. The original reports suggested that there were 3 chambers, which I took to mean that there were 3 burial chambers. However, the latest press reports seem to be refering to what is beyond the lintel as chamber 3 ie the space between the sphinxes and the caryatids is chamber 1 and chamber 2 is the space between the caryatids and the lintel.

They are already down to ground level in chamber 1 and have not unearthed any significant finds as far as i know (ie no grave goods, coffin or wall paintings). There were also no gates or doors below the sphinxes. Therefore chamber 1 simply appears to be an entrance passageway.

I don't think they have yet got down to ground level in Chamber 2, but again - as far as I can see - there are no doors beneath the caryatids. Chamber 2 therefore wouldn't seem to qualify as an antechamber, let alone a burial chamber. It therefore looks as if we have a single burial, which is most likely a single adult, not any kind of family vault.

Does anyone know if the soundings of the mound revealed lateral chambers off chamber 3? Or anything beyond chamber 3?

Also does anyone have any idea of measurements? Is chamber 3 positioned in the centre of the mound? Is there room for further chambers?
Edit

I am also confused about the dating of the sealing walls. If they are instead of doors, isn't this an important stylistic development, and should parallels be looked for? If they were put in later to prevent looting, that argues there was still someone about who cared, so that might imply it is the burial of a local.
The chamber 3 is positioned exactly in the centre of the mound : extreme pressure from above.They also think there is a fourth chamber.The professor Olga Palaggia suggests a. it is a tomb of the 48 BC , ( battle of Filippoi) because of the lesser quality of the mosaic etc plus the roman style of Cariatids which was a decoration much loved by the romans.b. There are not doors no hinges/pivots ie the monument was open= visitors .(The monument was full of marble ossuaries).c. The lion has no connection with the tomb.
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by gepd »

Were rosettes like those of the Amphipolis tomb also common in monuments from the roman period that Prof. Palagia refers to?
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by Efstathios »

The lion is dated to be late 4th century also. The only thing that resembles roman is the style of the karyatides but that doesn't say anything. Also, why seal a tomb for soldiers from a battle with walls and sand?

I would only rely on the official press releases and what the archaeologists that work there say, everyone else is making speculations.
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by agesilaos »

Plutarch Brutus 53 iv
When Antony found Brutus lying dead, he ordered the body to be wrapped in the most costly of his own robes and afterwards, on hearing that the robe had been stolen, put the thief to death. The ashes of Brutus he sent home to his mother Servilia.
Would tend to rule out a burial at Amphipolis ; don't know why Olga Plagia did not check this (Suetonius says that his head was cut off and thrown at the feet of Caesar's statue, divus Augustus 13).
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by Callisto »

agesilaos wrote:Plutarch Brutus 53 iv
When Antony found Brutus lying dead, he ordered the body to be wrapped in the most costly of his own robes and afterwards, on hearing that the robe had been stolen, put the thief to death. The ashes of Brutus he sent home to his mother Servilia.
Would tend to rule out a burial at Amphipolis ; don't know why Olga Plagia did not check this (Suetonius says that his head was cut off and thrown at the feet of Caesar's statue, divus Augustus 13).
Palagia just names Brutus as one of the participants in the battle. She doesnt claim anywhere in her interview that Brutus is being buried there. Based in her interview with "Ta Nea", she is being misquoted in Livejournal.
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by Alexias »

Thank you for your comments. I'll pass them on in Livejournal.

Zebedee, thanks very much for the link to the sounding map. If the entrance to chamber 3 is only 10 m from the entrance, and those are 25m squares, the entrance is very close to the retaining wall, so it seems very unlikely that H1 is chamber 3 as it is not deep enough, horizontally, into the mound. Maybe System1988's chamber 4? (I am not sure which direction the excavation is coming in from either. L1 or between those two L3s in the top right?)

It is difficult to tell the depth of those disturbances as well and whether or not they are later deposits into the mound. If all the disturbances represent chambers on the same level, it is a veritable catacomb.
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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by system1988 »

http://www.lifo.gr and http://en.protothema.gr for english. The third chamber. Red marble.Damage of the ceiling- need propping.




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Re: The Sphinxes Guarding the Lion Tomb Entrance at Amphipol

Post by Zebedee »

Alexias wrote:Thank you for your comments. I'll pass them on in Livejournal.

Zebedee, thanks very much for the link to the sounding map. If the entrance to chamber 3 is only 10 m from the entrance, and those are 25m squares, the entrance is very close to the retaining wall, so it seems very unlikely that H1 is chamber 3 as it is not deep enough, horizontally, into the mound. Maybe System1988's chamber 4? (I am not sure which direction the excavation is coming in from either. L1 or between those two L3s in the top right?)

It is difficult to tell the depth of those disturbances as well and whether or not they are later deposits into the mound. If all the disturbances represent chambers on the same level, it is a veritable catacomb.
The initial work suggested that L1 is where the ramp would most likely be with H1 representing the main area of the tomb. That would seem to fit with the initial expectations of a 20m x 5m tomb (total size) within the mound. Would appreciate correction if that has proven to be incorrect.

The published paper, Investigation of a Monumental Macedonian Tumulusby Three-Dimensional Seismic Topography, suggests that the mound may have tombs (plural) within it based upon their soundings and the indication of man-made structures within. Whether that is what is found, and whether the work done since has refined the findings, we'll surely find out over the next few weeks.
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