Sikyon survey project

The 2006 season

Archaeological survey - South Plateau

In the southern plateau we continued our previous investigations moving eastwards and covering squares SP30.1 to 53.6. Here we noticed a significant difference in the ceramic density between the northern and southern part of the area that we covered.

In the northern part (SP30-40) we recorded densities in the range of over 2000 sherds per square, whereas in the southern part, along the Asopos gulley, average density dropped below 500 sherds per square. In addition, in this southern part the number of tiles often exceeded and occasionally doubled the number of pottery fragments. This is most likely due to a lack of long-term habitation in this area and the proximity of the city wall; the latter case accounts for the large number of tiles -mostly of Lakonian and some of Corinthian type- in three contiguous squares. Ceramic wasters, which apparently belong to the same, large industrial area that we located in previous seasons, were found in small concentrations over many tracts. It is noteworthy that we did not retrieve any wasters from the southern part of the area we covered.

Absolute sherd and rooftile counts from the 2004-2006 seasons in the South Plateau.

Distribution of architectural fragments from the 2004-2006 seasons in the South Plateau.

Many architectural remains, both scattered and in situ, were found across the area, usually segments of walls built of ashlar blocks and integrated within the ancient grid.

In one square we located a wall built of rubble and mortar, manifestly of Roman or post-Roman date, while elsewhere we discovered part of the city wall, oriented NW-SE, that is parallel to the edge of the plateau on this side. This discovery confirms our belief that the wall surrounded the entire plateau, including its southern, more abrupt, side. High erosion rates along this side account for the obliteration of the line of the city-wall. (See the geo-archaeological report.)

Among the rest of the finds, which include fragments of two Doric columns (Fig. 19) and mosaic floors as well as a section of a stone channel (Fig. 20), most significant are the pieces of plaster, usually red, which were found in certain squares of tracts SP30, 32 and 35. In the same area, geophysical survey picked up a large residential unit with inner court.

Corner of a building in SP 46.3.

Part of the city wall in SP 45.4.

Fragment of a Doric column drum in SP 22.5.

Part of a stone channel in SP 41.3.