Shallalat Reports

Please find below detailed reports from Shallalat Gardens per year:

To

Supreme Council of Antiquities

Department of Foreign Missions Affairs

Cairo                                                                                  Alexandria, 26.05.2007

 

Subject: Excavation Report

 

The Hellenic Research Institute of the Alexandrian Civilazation (H.R.I.A.C.) obtained the permission from the Supreme Council of Antiquities to start an archaeological survey in Shallalat Gardens of Alexandria on 6th of March 2007.

The excavation started on 7th of May 2007 for a preliminary research of the site. Members of the mission were as follows:

Kalliopi Papakosta, Archaeologist, director of H.R.I.A.C.

Panos Theodoridis, Architect-Restorateur

Stamatis Chondrogiannis, Architect

Nikolia Spanou, Archaeologist

Raymond Anis-Fouad, Archaeologist

Leonidas Bardis, Financial Director

Partners:

Dr. Hossam El Hobrouk, Topographer

Dr. Mahmoud Abdel Fatah, Civil Engineer

Inspector:

Hasnaa Mahmoud Fahmy

A team of post gratuated students of Alexandria University participated in the survey. The excavation work was held out by 13-15 workers per day.

The survey, including excavation and drilling, ended on 23rd of May 2007.

 

Shallalat Gardens (early 20th c.) cover a  vast area ,replacing the northern bastions created at the  years of Mohamed Aly,which “modernized”  the medieval city walls of  Alexandria. The complex follows the curve NE of the Rosseta Gate.

Our decision was to start minor excavation works into the slope nearby the artificial cataract, to define the stratigraphy in a region where the old canal fronting the medieval walls had been altered, due to the construction of the bastions.

Our surveying plans later this year, include detailed pre-excavation works mainly at the northern part of the Gardens. Meanwhile, there is a relatively narrow space between the demolished bastions and the eastern limits of the garden, not permitting alternative technics of underground survey. The narrow area is clearly shown in Muller’s 1855 map.

 

 

 

 

 

Test drilling

 

Topographer Dr. Hossam El Hobrouk realized six standard points in a square grid in which the excavation trenches were related. The drill depended on the point 2, in a distance of 9.55 meters, heading straight to the east. The results of the drilling were presented in a row of nine samples, from the ground level to minus 7.75 meters. The results are:

-1.00 m   mud

-2.00 m   mud

-3.00 m   mud

-4.00 m   mixed limestone bits and some mud

-5.00 m   mixed stone-like debris and mud, slightly differed in color

-6.00 m  solid limestone

-7.00 m   mixed limestone and sandstone bits

-7.50 m   small pieces of deformed limestone

-7.75 m solid sandstone

 

Excavation

 

We created two trenches, heading N-S of some 3 by 4 meters each, separated by a 2 meter corridor. The excavation at both trenches revealed two levels of modern debris; the upper one is a thin layer of pure soil used  for the grass about 0,10 m. thick and the second one is a debris brought at the place in order to formate the garden in this location, which go down minus 5.78 m. in trench A. and minus 5.30 m. in trench B. counting from the topographical point 2. At that depth in both trenches it was detected part of the canal that was created in the years of Mohamed Aly, east of the medieval walls of Alexandria. The bend of the canal is constructed by hydraulic plaster consisted of sand and clay. The pottery that was collected from the debris is mostly of recent, islamic and post medieval date with a small amount of roman and hellenistic sherds. Besides pottery, it was also collected 9 hellenistic stamped amphora handles, 2 pieces of acanthus leaves from capitals of late roman date, a late hellenistic unguentarium and 3 coins two of 20th c. and one of late roman date.

 

 

List of plans and sketches

 

  1. preliminary topographical survey
  2. Charles Muller 1855 area map
  3. Trenches A and B. Plans
  4. Trench B .Stratigraphy
  5. St1 ΕΥΚΛΕΙΔΟΥ  plus symbol of ‘kyrikion’ and St2
  6. St3 ΕΠΙ ΕΡΜΟΚ[ρατους] from Knidos and St4…. plus symbol of ‘kyrikion’
  7. St5 and St6 ΦΙΛΩΝΟΣ
  8. St7 ΕΠΙ ΛΑΦΕΙΔΕΥΣ ΥΑΚΙ ΝΘΙΟΥ and St8 ΕΠΙ ΑΡΙΣΤΟΓΕΙΤΟΥ ΑΓΡΙΑΝΙΟΥ Rodian stamped handles, both dated in 3rd/2ndc.BC
  9. Late roman marble acanthus part
  10. Late roman marble acanthus part
  11. Late hellenistic unguentarium

 

List of photos

  1. St1
  2. St2
  3. St3
  4. St4
  5. St5
  6. St6
  7. St7
  8. St8
  9. St9
  10. N1, coin of 20th c.
  11. N1, coin of late roman date
  12. N1, coin of 20th c., 1938
  13. Late roman marble acanthus part
  14. Late roman marble acanthus part
  15. Late hellenistic unguentarium

 

 

The surveying plans of the H.R.I.A.C. are to undertake a systematic research of the whole area of Shallalat Gardens  for the next years, beginning a geophysical survey as well as an excavation project for October-November 2007. The site is very important for the topography of ancient Alexandria and has to be studied carefully.

 

We wish to thank, for this start of our research, the Supreme Council of Antiquities for permitting our Institute to work in Alexandria, His Excellency the Governor of Alexandria Mr. Adel Labib, the Authorities of the Antiquity Service of Alexandria as well as our Egyptian friends and colleagues that supported our work.

 

 

For and on behalf of the

H.R.I.A.C.

Kalliopi Papakosta

Director

To

Supreme Council of Antiquities

Department of Foreign Missions Affairs

Cairo Egypt

 

Subject: Excavation Report

 

The Hellenic Research Institute of the Alexandrian Civilization (H.R.I.A.C.) obtained the permission from the Supreme Council of Antiquities to start an archaeological survey in Shallalat Gardens of Alexandria on 3rd of February 2008.

The excavation started on 25th of April 2008 for a preliminary research of the site. Members of the mission were as follows:

Kalliopi Papakosta, Archaeologist, director of H.R.I.A.C.

Nikolia Spanou, Archaeologist

Raymond Anis-Fouad, Archaeologist

Emmanuel Chamaoui, Conservator

Olga Hatzifotis, Architect

Partners:

Dr. Gad El-Qady, Geophisist

Inspector:

Nagat Mohamed Metwaly

A team of post gratuated students of Alexandria University participated in the survey. The excavation work was held out by 6-8 workers per day.

The survey, including excavation and drilling, ended on 22nd of May 2008.

 

Shallalat Gardens (early 20th c.) cover a  vast area ,replacing the northern bastions created at the  years of Mohamed Aly,which “modernized”  the medieval city walls of  Alexandria. The complex follows the curve NE of the Rosseta Gate.

 

 

 

Excavation

 

We defined an area 6x5m according to the results of the geophysical survey at site , profiles 1 & 2. After we removed the modern debris, a part of a wall revealed at 5,40m depth below the surface, almost at the center of trench. The wall was built by lime stones and structural material in second use, without any connecting material. Its orientation is from East to West and by the pottery collected from the level of its foundation it’s probably dated at the Arabic period. The western part of this wall was established over the remains of a previous dated wall, perhaps of Byzantine date. At 5,80m depth at the southern part of the trench, as it is defined by the wall, and beneath the wall itself, at 6,80m depth, we revealed a layer of sand, empty of any material. Beneath that, in 7,40m depth we detected a layer of sandstone. The fact that in the same depth we reached the level of the aquiferous horizon, forced us to continue the excavation at this part of the trench in a smaller area about 1×1 wide. At 8,40m we detected that the sandstone ended and another layer of sand appeared. Unfortunately, at this depth we had to stop the excavation because of the water.

At the northern part of the trench, at 5,70m depth we revealed a layer of debris. Among the findings there was not any contemporary pottery, but in order to date this layer we should first study the materials from it carefully. The debris was consisted of pottery, many fragments of plaster with paint, large fragments of alabaster and architectural parts. At this area, a layer of sand was revealed at 7, 70m, but until the depth of 8,40m we didn’t reach any layer of sandstone.

Among the findings there are 11 stamped amphora handles, 2 coins, an inscribed part of marble, an inscribed part of alabaster, a limestone part of acanthus leaf, a part of a small column and a part of architrave.

 

The surveying plans of the H.R.I.A.C. are to undertake a systematic research of the whole area of Shallalat Gardens  for the next years, beginning a new excavation project for October-November-December 2008. The site is very important for the topography of ancientAlexandria and has to be studied carefully.

 

The most important issue now is to find the suitable way to drain the water of the trenches, because our experience after two excavation periods in Shallalat is the necessity to control this major problem, because we think that the Ptolemaic layer of Alexandria is below the level of water.

 

We wish to thank, for this start of our research, the Supreme Council of Antiquities for permitting our Institute to work inAlexandria, His Excellency the Governor of Alexandria Mr. Adel Labib, the Authorities of the Antiquity Service of Alexandria as well as our Egyptian friends and colleagues that supported our work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

For and on behalf of H.R.I.A.C.

 

Kalliopi Papakosta

Director

To

Supreme Council of Antiquities

Department of Foreign Missions Affairs

Cairo Egypt

 

Subject: Excavation Report

 

The Hellenic Research Institute of the Alexandrian Civilization (H.R.I.A.C.) obtained the permission from the Supreme Council of Antiquities to start an archaeological excavation in Shallalat Gardens of Alexandria on 29th of January 2009.

The excavation started on 13th of April 2009.

Members of the mission were as follows:

Kalliopi Limneou-Papakosta, Archaeologist, director of H.R.I.A.C.

Nikolia Spanou, Archaeologist

Raymond Anis-Fouad, Archaeologist

Emmanuel Chamaoui, Conservator

 

Inspectors:

Ahmad Abdel Fatah El Alfy, 10.04.2009 – 27.04.2009

Mohamed Helmy Aboubakr Nour El Din, 28.04.2009 – 14.05.2009

 

A team of post gratuated students of Alexandria University participated in the survey. The excavation work was held out by 6-8 workers per day.

The excavation ended on 14th of April 2009.

 

Shallalat Gardens (early 20th c.) cover a  vast area ,replacing the northern bastions created at the  years of Mohamed Aly,which “modernized”  the medieval city walls of  Alexandria. The complex follows the curve NE of the Rosseta Gate.

 

 

Excavation

 

On 13th and 14th of April, we started removing the modern debris . After removing it, we started excavating an area 5,00m. long and 3,00m wide at the depth of 6,00m from the surface.  At the depth of 6,40m, into the west side of the trench, a layer of soft lime mortar was traced, probably the base of a floor. Its thickness rates from 0,08m. to 0,15m. Inside the trench, across the southern part, we excavated a strata of dark mud filled with a great amount of pottery, probably of hellenistic/ early roman period, pieces of animal bones and pieces of coloured  plaster, though at the northern part, a layer of sand  was found filled of many broken pieces of architectural parts, pottery  and coloured plaster.

 

Among the sherds collected from this unit appears to be many pieces of fine pottery (sigillattas).  At the depth of 6,95m we traced a small part of a wall foundation, extending from NE to SW. After it was drawn and photographed, we removed it in order to continue the excavation. At the depth of 7,40m we reached the level of the water table.

 

After using pumps for the drilling of the water,  we continued the excavation although with serious difficulties. At the same depth, across the south side of the trench we started revealing a part of a construction made by lime mortar and small stones compacted together. This construction was extended at all the excavated area.

 

As its northern part was found at the depth of 7,75m, appeared to decline towards this direction.  Since we couldn’t extend the area of the excavation because of the existence of big trees, we were unable to trace the edges of this construction.  At the NW part the trench, the construction was destroyed, so we continued the excavation in order to reveal the bottom of its base.

 

At this area, we revealed part of a wall constructed mostly by lime stones and clay tiles. The wall extends from W to the E and it seems to have been covered by this construction of lime mortar. Immediately in front of this part of the wall, a layer of sand and stones was found, which was the fill of the constructing ditch.

 

We ended the excavation, in order to extend the trench and solve the problems of water level as well as draining the site, at the following season.

 

Above the surface of this construction, into a thick layer of pottery sherds, a Hellenistic Statue of a naked man, of extremely fine art was found, study and publishing of which will follow promptly.

 

Other significant findings were many pieces of architectural parts, lamps, coins- though they were extremely oxidized by the water- and parts of a mosaic made by off white tessera, which maybe it’s connected with the upper lime floor.

 

 

The surveying plans of the H.R.I.A.C. are to undertake a systematic research of the whole area of Shallalat Gardens  for the next years, beginning a new excavation project for October-November-December 2009. The site is very important for the topography of ancientAlexandria and has to be studied carefully.

 

The most important issue now is to find the suitable way to drain the water of the trenches, because our experience after two excavation periods in Shallalat is the necessity to control this major problem, because we think that the Ptolemaic layer of Alexandria is below the level of water.

 

We wish to thank, for this start of our research, the Supreme Council of Antiquities for permitting our Institute to work in Alexandria, His Excellency the Governor of Alexandria Mr. Adel Labib, the Authorities of the Antiquity Service of Alexandria as well as our Egyptian friends and colleagues that supported our work.

 

 

 

For and on behalf of the HRIAC

 

 

Kalliopi Papakosta

Director

To

Supreme Council of Antiquities

Department of Foreign Missions Affairs

Cairo Egypt

 

Subject: Excavation Report

 

The Hellenic Research Institute of the Alexandrian Civilization (H.R.I.A.C.) obtained the permission from the Supreme Council of Antiquities to continue the archaeological excavation in Shallalat Gardens of Alexandria on 31st of March 2010.

The excavation started on 6th of April 2010.

Members of the mission were as follows:

Kalliopi Limneou-Papakosta, Archaeologist, director of H.R.I.A.C.

Nikolia Spanou, Archaeologist

Raymond Anis-Fouad, Archaeologist

Vassilis Datsioudis, Conservator

Sintichakis Andreas, Civil Engineer

Theofilou Georgia, Archaeologist

Kanatselou Katerina, Archaeologist

Venieri Konstantina, Archaeologist

Belegris Alexandros, Photographer

Riham Abdallah, Archaeologist

 

Inspector:

 

Iman Hussein Mohamed

 

 

The excavation work was held out by 10-13 workers per day.

The excavation ended on 10th of May 2010.

 

Shallalat Gardens (early 20th c.) cover a vast area, replacing the northern bastions created at the years of Mohamed Aly, which “modernized” the medieval city walls of Alexandria. The complex follows the curve NE of the Rosetta Gate.

 

The excavation was carried out at the same area we excavated the previous season. We enlarged the excavation area, after removing two big palm trees, in order to detect the edges of the lime mortar construction that had been detected. For this reason we extended the previous trench 14m. to the west, 2,00m. to the south, 3,00m. to the north and 5,00m. to the east.

 

We started excavated at the western part of this trench and at the depth of -3.60m. below the surface we revealed a strata consisted of a destroyed structure made by mortar and clay plinths, part of a destroyed brick wall and plentiful pottery. Among these we excavated two large pithoi, still in situ, but with their upper part broken. All over this area we detected traces of fire. We didn’t excavate this strata, since we want to enlarge the area as long as possible. The strata was traced at an area 7.50m. x 8.00m. and probably is part of a workshop or storage area. Depending on the pottery, though not systematically studied yet, the chronology rises up to the late roman period.

 

We continued excavated eastern of this occupation area, after leaving unexcavated a 3.00m. zone. At the depth of -7.10m., at the west side of the area, we revealed a wall 1,78m. high and 1.57m. wide made mostly by broken pieces of crafted lime stones, connected with earth. The wall is based on the lime mortar structure that had been revealed at the previous season. Because of the water, that covers the biggest part of the wall, most of the stones had been removed.  Depending on the sherds collected among the stones, we consider this structure also late roman and it is, probably, part of foundation.

At the depth of -7.60m.(S), and -8.30 (N), we traced the extension of the lime mortar construction to the west and at the depth of -7.60m. to the east. Its total excavated length is 12.50m. and width 4,50m. Above it, we excavated the same strata with the plentiful late hellenistic/roman pottery, architectural parts, parts of sculptures and colored plaster. To the north-west part of the trench, at -8.30m. we revealed two big crafted stone blocks of psammite, covered at some parts by bricks. The stone blocks are based on the lime mortar construction, the basement of which we couldn’t trace, because it extends to the whole area. In order to see the basement of the psammite stone blocks, we had to remove a small part of the lime mortar construction right in front of the blocks. Among the small parts of the crafted stones and the bricks we removed, we revealed a big building block lime stone with anathyrosis at one side that was drop there, used as filling of the lime mortar construction.

Among the pottery there are many sigillattas and other fine red ware, pointed – base amphoras, parts and wholes, some with painted marks and plenty of coarse ware. Other significant findings are a miniature nude male torso, two parts of female statues, a finger and one breast, a part of another marble statue, possibly a knee, two small parts of capitals, lamps, coins- though they were extremely oxidized by the water-and stamped amphora handles.

 

 

The surveying plans of the H.R.I.A.C. are to undertake a systematic research of the whole area of Shallalat Gardens for the next years, continuing the excavation project on October-November-December 2010. The site is very important for the topography of ancientAlexandria and has to be studied carefully.

 

The most important issue now is to find the suitable way to drain the water of the trenches, because our experience after four excavation periods in Shallalat is the necessity to control this major problem, because we think that the Ptolemaic layer of Alexandria is below the level of water.

 

We wish to thank, the Supreme Council of Antiquities for permitting our Institute to work in Alexandria, His Excellency the Governor of Alexandria Mr. Adel Labib, the Authorities of the Antiquity Service of Alexandria as well as our Egyptian friends and colleagues that supported our work.

 

 

For and on behalf of the HRIAC

 

Kalliopi Limneos-Papakosta

Director

To

Supreme Council of Antiquities

Department of Foreign Missions Affairs

Cairo, Egypt

 

Subject: Excavation Report

 

According to the permission from the Supreme Council of Antiquities we start the sixth excavational season on 15th of October 2015 and finished it on 21 of the October 2015.

 

Members of the mission were as follows:

Calliope Limneos-Papakosta,

Archaeologist, director of H.R.I.A.C.

 

Nikolia Spanou, Archaeologist

Panayiotis Christos Konstantinidis, Archaeologist

Despoina Aggelakou, Archaeologist

Zorzeta Theofilou, Archaeologist

 

Inspectors:

Hoda Sobhy Nashed

 

A team of students from the Alexandria University, Greco-Roman and Egyptian department, participated in the survey after an agreement with the Alexandria University. The excavation work was held out by 10-12 workers per day.

 

Excavation

 

The excavation was carried out at the same area of Shallalat Gardens as the years of 2009, and 2010. We removed the modern debris from an area 23m. at the direction N-S and 35m. at the direction E-W. At the depth of 3,5m. from the surface, at the northern part of the excavation area, we unearthed part of a construction possibly of post arabic date, constructed of reused ancient lime blocks.

 

Subsequently, the excavation was carried out at an area 17,5m. E-W x 10m N-S. The southern part of the trench, 3,5m. from the south edge and 14m. from the east edge, had been excavated the previous years. As a result until the depth of 9,5m. we removed the modern debris that had been used to cover the area. To the rest of the trench, after removing a thick layer of earth empty of any kind of constructions, at the depth of 7,30m., we reached the strata of dark mud known from the previous seasons. At the NW corner of the trench a part of a shallow conduit built of partly crafted lime stones, architectural parts of earlier date and parts of clay bricks as connecting material was found into this strata. According to the pottery, the date of this strata should be placed at the post roman period.

 

The bad weather caused a great delay to the process of excavation, as the pumps were not sufficient enough to drain out quickly the quantity of water. In addition the whole trench was covered again with modern debris brought by the rainfall. Therefore we concentrated to the SW part of the excavation area, leaving the rest of the it unexcavated. At the depth of 7,60m. we reached the strata of the compacted lime breccia. Localy, under this lime mortar, a 25 cm. thick layer of pinkish mortar consisted of gravel and unwrought alabaster pieces, with clay bricks at its lower part, was detected. It is of great importance to note that the alabaster pieces used in the mortar and a big piece of semi-worked alabaster found in the strata that covered it, are of similar quality with the material that has been used for the construction of Alabaster Tomb placed at the Latin cemetery. Other finds of the same layer are late hellenistic/roman pottery, architectural parts, fragments of colored plaster and parts of sculptures. Among the latter prominent is a small fragment of an arm, which is already verified as a part of the Alexander’s statue exhibited at the National Museum of Alexandria since 2009.

 

At the depth of about 11m., immediately below the clay bricks at the base of the pinkish mortar layer, a heavy constuction of large lime blocks covered with a fine lime mortar extended towards all directions was detected. Due to the severe difficulties caused by the water, we were unable to continue excavating this season, in order to clarify the character of the construction.

 

Our main goal for the spring excavation season of 2016 is to accomplish a master plan for draining the water of the trench in order to reveal the construction at its all extent and excavate it systematically, as we have strong indications that we have reached the ptolemaic strata.

 

We would like to thank for their support Supreme Council of Antiquities, Mr. Hany Abou El

Azm, Mr. Mustafa Rusdi and Mrs. Samiha Noshy Rafla.

For and On Behalf of

Hellenic Research Institute of Alexandrian Civilization

 

 

Calliope Limneos-Papakosta

Director

To

Supreme Council of Antiquities

Department of Foreign Missions Affairs

Cairo, Egypt

 

Subject: Excavation Report

 

According to the permission from the Supreme Council of Antiquities we start the seventh excavational season on 1st of April 2016 and finished it on 5th of June 2016.

 

Members of the mission were as follows:

Calliope Limneos-Papakosta,

Archaeologist, director of H.R.I.A.C.

 

Nikolia Spanou, Archaeologist

Christos Troullinos, Archaeologist

Dimitrios Sourlas, Archaeologist

Zorzeta Theofilou, Archaeologist

Angela Tsesmetzi, Architect

 

Inspectors:

Viola Ibrahim

Ahmed Mohamed Ibrahim Abd Elgawad

 

A team of students from the Alexandria University, Greco-Roman department, participated in the survey after an agreement with the Alexandria University (supervisor: Dr Mona Hagag). The excavation work was held out by 10-12 workers per day.

 

Excavation

 

The excavation was carried out at the North-West part of Shallalat Gardens at the same area as the previous season (October-November 2015). We further removed the modern debris until the debth of approximately 6m., towards the west and north of the main trench by mechanical means.

 

For the first time in the area we undertook a dewatering project in order to solve the problem of water table that all the previous years was preventing us from excavating deeper. A system of five wells around the trench, ten meters deeper than the level of the excavation area, was made as well as three inside the trench. In every well were placed two pumps working 24 h per day. The result was successful enough to enable us excavating properly.

 

Subsequently, the excavation was carried out at an area 14, 00 m. E-W x 12, 00 m N-S. We removed the modern debris that had been used to cover the area of the trench manually. At the rest of the area, west and north, we excavated the ancient debris, a thick strata full of fragmented pottery from hellenistic to roman period, known from the previous seasons. We collected a small amount of pottery that we deposited it again at the area, after conferming the date of this strata. At the debth of 8, 30 m. to the south and 9,10m. to the north-west we reached the strata of the compacted lime breccia. The breccia was not found at the most part of the north side of the trench; there the strata of the ancient debris continues until the debth of 10, 20 m.

 

At the SW corner, under the strata of the ancient debris, we unearthed part of a construction made by pinkish thick mortar that contains gravel and unwrought alabaster pieces which seems to be kind of floor. This part seems to have been detached from the rest of the construction that goes further into the west side of the trench. Immediately underneath there are fallen parts of a kind of wall made by dark reddish clay bricks, fallen on the breccia. To further understand this construction we have to continue excavating towards the west. The chronology of it seems to be of a late date.

 

At the middle of the trench under the strata of the ancient debris part of a drain was found. For its construction part of the breccia was dug. The drain was placed immediately on the blocks of the foundation that has been revealed at the biggest part of the trench. It was made of well worked pieces of limestone in second use and broken parts of clay bricks. Among these, was a pedestal made of alabaster, also in second use. We removed the drain, after drawing and photographing it.

 

At the rest of the trench, under the strata of breccia we revealed part of the foundation of a large building, that extents further to the south and to the east. To the west almost certainly we have reached its limit, while towards the north it is not clear yet as at many parts the blocks have been removed. Also, at the NW part, north of the foundation blocks that have been revealed and mostly into this side the trench, a part of wall was found. For its construction have been used limestone blocks in second use, most probably from the foundation. Though it seems of a later date, further investigation is needed toward the north.

 

The excavated dimensions of the foundation are 10, 00 x 12, 00 m,  N-S and E-W respectively. The size of the limestone blocks used for the construction of it is approximately 1,00 x 0,60 x 0,50m. At the SE corner of the trench a small part of wall has been found made also by big limestone blocks, measuring 1,15 x 0,60 x 0,60 m., put together without joining material. The wall also extends towards the south. Blocks of the foundation continue to extend under the wall to the east and south. The construction strata of the building has been dated to the Ptolemaic period, according to the pottery that has been collected from it, among it an early Hellenistic lamp that has been collected under the blocks of the wall.

 

It is important to mention that under the foundation at the height of 10, 70 m. we reached a strata of pure sand and sandstone, which we consider as the bedrock.

 

The size of the foundation blocks as well as the size of the wall blocks, which is extremely big and the dimensions of the whole construction show that we have uncovered part of a public building of Ptolemaic period. This fact in combination with the site, which possibly belonged to the Royal Quarter of the ancient Alexandria, makes the finding important for the knowledge of topography of the Ptolemaic city.

 

The plans for the next excavation season are the continuation of the excavation to the south where the construction is extended, after demolishing the big volume of debris and soil at this area.

 

We would like to thank for their support Supreme Council of Antiquities, Mr. Hany Abou El

Azm, Mr. Mustafa Rusdi and Mrs. Samiha Noshy Rafla.

 

 

 

For and On Behalf of

Hellenic Research Institute of Alexandrian Civilization

 

 

Calliope Limneos-Papakosta

Director

o

Supreme Council of Antiquities

Department of Foreign Missions Affairs

Cairo, Egypt

 

Subject: Excavation Report

 

According to the permission from the Supreme Council of Antiquities we start the eighth excavational season on 1st of Ocrober 2016 and finished it on 11th of December 2016.

 

Members of the mission were as follows:

Calliope Limneos-Papakosta,

Archaeologist, director of H.R.I.A.C.

 

Nikolia Spanou, Archaeologist

Panagiotis Konstantinidis, Archaeologist

 

Inspectors:

Amr Ibrahim Ali Nouh

Rania Osman Abdelmaksud

 

Five archaeologists working for the Archaeological Service participated at the excavation as trainees inspectors. Also, a team of students from the Alexandria University, Greco-Roman department, participated in the survey after an agreement with the Alexandria University (supervisor: Dr Mona Hagag). The excavation work was held out by 6-8 workers per day.

 

Besides the excavation work, we undertook a two weeks study of the finds stored at the Mustafa Kamel storage facilities. A report has already been sent to the Archaeological Service.

 

Excavation

 

Our aim for this season was to excavate further towards the south of the trench N in order to reveal the continuation of the foundation blocks we had unearthed during Apri-May 2016.

We extended the area of excavation 7, 85m. towards the south and 17, 25 m. to the axis E-W.

Until the depth of 5 m. we removed the modern debris by mechanical means.

 

At the depth of 7 m. we excavated the remains of a construction made by small size rough stones. We unearthed the NE part of a room and a small part of a floor (1,80 m. x 1, 00 m.) made by layers of thick mortar. Its walls extend 3 m. to the axis of E –W and 1,70 to the N- S. The presence of the mortar floor leads us to interpret the construction as a workshop that according to pottery must be dated to the late roman/early byzantine period. Further excavation work and study will enable us to understand more about this phase of the area.

 

At about the same depth we revealed the strata of breccia but only to the northest part of the area, extending 11m E –W and 2 m. N – S. What it seems interesting is that its south surface has been cut straight, obviously at an aim to be used as a kind of a wall, probably at the date of workshops activity.

 

Finally, at the depth of 10 m. we unearthed a row of big limestone blocks extending 11 m. to the axis E –W, which is the continuation of the foundation blocks we had excavated during last season. South of this row, we started to excavate a part of a construction made by small size well crafted limestones, but further excavation is needed in order to reveal it.

 

Also important is to note that the ptolemaic foundation is extending even further to the east as we ascertained by this season excavation.

 

Among the finds of this season, mostly pottery, lamps and stamped amphora handles from the strata that had covered all the area and is known from all the previous seasons, special reference must be made to a sculpture fragment. It is a marble hand holding a spear (part of it). It belongs to the statue of Alexander, found at the trench on 2009, now at the National Museum of Alexandria and its great significance is that it ascertains that the statue is of the Alexander with a spear type, a debated work of Lysippus.

 

The plans for the next excavation season are the continuation of the excavation to the south and east where the construction is extended, after demolishing the big volume of debris and soil at this area.

 

We would like to thank for their support the Supreme Council of Antiquities, Dr.Mohamed Ismail Khaled, Mr. Mustafa Rusdi, Dr.Mohamed Abdelhamid, Mrs. Samiha Noshy Rafla and Mrs Amira Sabah.

 

 

For and On Behalf of

Hellenic Research Institute of Alexandrian Civilization

 

 

Calliope Limneos-Papakosta

Director

To

Supreme Council of Antiquities

Department of Foreign Missions Affairs

Cairo, Egypt

 

Subject: Excavation Report

 

According to the permission from the Supreme Council of Antiquities we started the tenth excavational season on 1st of October and finished it on 11th of December.

 

Inspectors:

Ines Salem Mohamed (1/10/17 – 11/11/17)

Aziza Ali Mohamed (12/11/17 – 11/12/17)

 

The excavation work was held out by 12-14 workers per day.

 

Excavation

 

Work at the site started on the 1st of October by removing a big amount of modern debris in order to extend the excavation area toward the South and West.

 

At the southern part of the enlarged area, about 5m. deeper than the surface ground, part of a roman road was excavated [pl.1]. It extends 24m. in the East – West direction. The maximum width that was excavated is 2,30m., as it seems to continue into the south side of the trench. It is made of big polygonal black stones that have been placed right on the soil. At the excavated part was not detected any kind of substratum. Its northern edge has not been preserved, except from the western part, where a curb made of limestone blocks has been unearthed. About 1m. under the road deck, part of the ancient canalization for the waste water was found, built at the typical arched type, known from other areas of Alexandria [pl.2]. Its sides are made by medium sized crafted stones and its top by stone slabs. The floor and the ceiling are lined by a kind of hard white mortar. At some parts along the road deck, remains of a destruction strata was detected belonging to later constructions [pl.3], which must have been abolished the function of the street. The road is identified as part of one of the main longitudinal streets of ancient Alexandria as described by Mahmoud Bey El Falaki, specifically as the street L2.

 

To the North-West of the road, 3m. deeper, parts of constructions, among them a stone path and a room, and its destruction layers have been excavated, some of which have used blocks from the Ptolemaic structure that we are excavating a little to the North [pl.4]. Their function has not yet been understood, as their excavation has not been completed, though their date seems to be roman.

 

Work at the site of the Ptolemaic foundation was restricted to the clearing of the entrance of the tunnel, that had been found during the previous season and the revealing of the continuation of the foundation blocks towards the North and the West, due to problems with the water pumping system.

 

After clearing the entrance of the tunnel, we confirmed that it is crafted into the breccia and that a canal made of small sized lime-stones and at a part crafted into one of the Ptolemaic blocks, extending to the North-South direction, was transporting water into the tunnel [pl.5]. Its excavation has not been completed, so for the time is not known if it is connected with any of the constructions mentioned above.

The excavation revealed a row of Ptolemaic foundation blocks extending to the North direction right to the west of the tunnel. A little further to the west, the foundation blocks continue toward the South direction [pl.6], though we could not proceed to their excavation due to the big amount of the water. According to the data that have been known by the excavation till now, the long axis of the building seems to be in the direction of East – West. The extent of the revealed part is 36m.

 

Besides the excavation work, geophysical investigations were held by the IMS-Forth, Laboratory of Geophysical – Satellite Remote Sensing & Archaeo-Environment, Greece.

The geophysical method of 2D and 3D Electrical Resistivity Tomography (2D/3D ERT) was employed in the east, south and north part of the garden and especially in areas which were accessible and free from modern constructions [pl.7]. ERT method was considered the optimum technique to meet the specific goals of the project considering the nature and dimensions of the targets trying to map in combination to their relatively large burial depth. The purpose of the 2017 geophysical campaign was to map the subsurface resistivity properties in different parts of Shallalat Gardens and indicate geophysical signatures that should be further investigated either by drilling or excavation to reveal their nature (archaeological or geophysical origin). A total area of almost 12.000 square meters was covered in different parts of the park along 41 ERT lines with a cumulative length of 4.6 Km.

The results of the survey are still being prossessed and are expected to be reported.

 

We would like to thank for their support the Supreme Council of Antiquities and the Antiquities Service of Alexandria.

 

 

For and On Behalf of

Hellenic Research Institute of Alexandrian Civilization

 

 

Calliope Limneos-Papakosta

Director

To

Supreme Council of Antiquities Department

of Foreign Missions Affairs Cairo, Egypt

 

Subject: Excavation Report

According to the permission from the Supreme Council of Antiquities we started the eleventh excavation season on 1st of Mars and finished it on 26th of June.

 

Members:

Calliope Limneos–Papakosta, archaeologist,

director of H.R.I.A.C.

Nikolia Spanou, archaeologist

Panagiotis Konstantinidis, archaeologist

Angela Tsesmetzi, architect

 

Inspectors:

Samer Alaadien Abdel Ghafour

Doaa Fathy Shalaby

Amira Alaadien Ali

Abeer Houssein Abdo

 

The excavation work was held out by 10-12 workers per day.

 

 

Excavation

 

This season we extended the excavation area 8m to the west, 8,70m. to the south-west and 5,50m. to the east in order to check if the Ptolemaic foundation is extended toward these directions. Also, two small trenches were made to the north of the area, 3,40 x 3 each.  A big amount of modern debris was removed and two additional wells were opened in order to pump out the water that is found at the depth of c. 6m [pl. 1, 2]

 

At the SW area, under the remnants of walls that belong to a construction of a later date, it was revealed part of a channel like structure made of pinkish coarse mortar and brownish red bricks [pl. 3]. At parts, the mortar of its walls has been applied on blocks of the Ptolemaic foundation, which seem to be at place [pl. 4]. It is based on breccia and it’s probably date at the roman period.

 

About 70 cm deeper, at the west and south side of this structure, parts of the Ptolemaic foundation have been revealed extending N to S and E to W respectively [pl. 5]. These two rows of the foundation are found to be out of the main axis of the Ptolemaic building, forming a kind of separate, but not independent, room. Further excavation is needed for revealing its plan.

 

At the east side of the area parts of later construction were excavated, but lower we didn’t detect blocks of the Ptolemaic foundation [pl. 6], either we reached the east end of the building or the blocks have been removed from this area. Further excavation toward the east direction is needed in order to conclude.

 

The excavation at the north part of the area uncovered the continuation toward this direction of the western N to S row of the foundation [pl. 7]. It is extended even northern but the debris and a modern construction do not allow the extension of the excavation further to this direction. The excavation at the northern part of the middle N to S row of the Ptolemaic foundation revealed part of a construction built by Ptolemaic blocks that have been removed of their original place [pl. 8, 9].

 

The excavation research of this season confirmed that after the destruction of the Ptolemaic building, the place was occupied during the early and late roman period. The plan of the Ptolemaic building is yet to be revealed, as it extents further to the north and south – west.

 

The excavation produced pottery of Hellenistic to roman date, stamped amphora handle, architectural parts mainly from architraves and capitals etc. Among the finds there is a part of the right arm from the Alexander statue, now at the National museum of Alexandria [pl. 10]. The rest of the finds were delivered to Mareya and Mustafa Kamel storage facilities.

 

Besides the excavation work, 10 drillings were made to testify certain points appointed by the results of the geophysical survey that was conducted during the previous season. At all of them, traces of constructions were detected with high certainty.

 

We would like to thank for their support the Supreme Council of Antiquities and the authorities of the Antiquity Service of Alexandria.

 

 

For and On Behalf of

Hellenic Research Institute of Alexandrian Civilization

 

 

Calliope Limneos-Papakosta

Director

 

Subject: Excavation Report

According to the permission from the Supreme Council of Antiquities we started the 13th excavation season on 20th of February and finished it on 3rd of June.

 

Members:

Calliope Limneos–Papakosta, archaeologist,

director of H.R.I.A.C.

Nikolia Spanou, archaeologist

Reham Abdallah Zaki, archaeologist

Angela Tsesmetzi, architect

 

 

The excavation work was held out by 15-18 workers per day.

 

 

Excavation

 

During this season the excavation was held at three sectors, Zone 2: trench N and trenches K / K1, Zone 3: trench S3 and Zone 4: trench N2.

 

 

Zone 2/N

 

During the first week cleaning and arranging work has been done at the site (Zone 2), in order to be able to extend the survey towards the north part of the excavation area.

We extended the excavation area, at the westernmost part of the site, where the double row of limestone blocks that belong to the Ptolemaic building running at the N-S axis was revealed during the last season excavation. The excavation was held at an area 4,00m x 4,00m. Part of the destruction layer of the mosaic floor that was unearthed at the previous season was removed in order to continue to the deeper layers. At the depth of 9, 00m, from the modern surface, a double row of the Ptolemaic foundation was unearthed, being the continuation of the part that was excavated at previous season. Above it a destruction layer of the channel like structure made of pinkish coarse mortar and brownish red bricks was detected. This structure was constructed on a breccia layer about 0,40m. thick. Upon its destruction, at a later date, has been built a poorly shaped retaining wall [pl.2]. Due to the lack of space we were unable to continue excavating though this row of the foundation blocks seems to be preserved even to the north [pl. 1].

We continued excavating at the south-western part of the area where the Ptolemaic foundation has been revealed, trying to detect as much of it as possible. We uncovered part of it at the southern and eastern edge of the channel-like construction made of pinkish coarse mortar and brownish red bricks, though destroyed at its most part [pl. 2a].

Also, we held a small scale research at the area of late roman/early byzantine workshop remains, south of the prolemaic foundation, that were uncovered at previous seasons [pl. 2b].

 

Zone 2/K [pl. 3a]

After topographical evaluation of the possible extension toward the east of the roman road, that was unearthed during previous seasons and was identified as road L2 according to El Falaky’s map, we made a sounding, 2m. x 2m., at the eastern edge of Zone 2 where the cross section of L2 with the broad road R1 would have been. At the depth of 2,00m., under a layer of modern debris, part of a structure with a crepis was revealed extending at the axis of E-W. Right at its south, at the same depth a layer of compact soil, 0, 80m. thick, was detected, most probably being the foundation of a street (L2). At its western detected part this layer seems to have been curved following the outline of a well that was built at the place. The construction of the well seems to be contemporary with the sub layer, but ante date of the construction with the crepis.

Further to the south, an open water channel made of coarse grayish waterproof mortar which runs E-W was uncovered, after removing a layer of modern (early – mid 20th century) debris, the same that cover the whole area. Most probably, this channel used to belong to the watering system of Shallalat at an early date, though it has not been unearthed at its whole. South of it, part of a second construction with a crepis was detected extending outside the limits of the trench. In order to investigate it we made another sounding, K1, west of the K.

 

Zone 2/K1, [pl. 3b]

At this trench, parts of both structures with crepis and the water channel were found, though they extend out of the limits of the trench. The character and the exact use of the crepis structures were not ascertained, thought their preserved surface made of compacted strong mortar and semi – dressed stones, indicates their use as a foundation.

An earlier construction, made of a paved with small size semi – dressed limestones area and three successive layers of limestone blocks at its east side was also revealed at a lower depth. Its excavation will be continued during the next excavation period.

 

Zone 3/S3 [pl. 4a]

We held a sounding, 7, 50m. x 4, 50 m., at the south side of Shallalat gardens, at the area S3 according to results of the geophysical survey. After removing the modern debris, at the depth of 3, 50m. a layer containing Islamic/Ottoman pottery was detected. Worth mentioning is that this same level contained pieces of the characteristic black stones by which the roman road L2 has been made of. According to our estimations at that point R1 broad road of Roman Alexandria would has been located. After removing it, a part of the defensive wall of the Medieval/Ottoman city was revealed, at the depth of 3, 40m. – 5, 00m. The wall runs E-W and is constructed of a row of well dressed stones at its north face bearing white mortar, though its filling has been made by rough and semi – dressed stones compacted with grayish-whitish mortar. The south edge of the fortification wall has not been detected as it seems to extend further out of the limits of the sounding.

At the SW corner of the trench, later constructions seem to have disturbed part of the filling of the fortification wall. Also, we were unable to explore its foundation as it goes deeper than the level of the water table. In total, the part of the wall that has been unearthed measures as follows: length: 7,50m, width: 4,50m., height: 3,20m.

The excavation work at this sector has been completed for this season by covering the trench with soil. The following season the excavation will be continued at this area.

 

Zone 4/N2, [pl. 4b]

We held a sounding, 6, 00m. x 4, 50m., at the north side of Shallalat gardens, at the area N2 according to the results of the geophysical survey. After removing a thick layer of modern debris, at the north part of the trench, at 7, 50m. depth, part of a construction made of limestone blocks was detected. The construction resembles to the Ptolemaic foundation unearthed at Zone 2/N, but due to the limited space of the trench and the need for dewatering planning we were not able to continue the work at this sector this season.

The excavation work at this sector has been completed for this season by covering the trench with soil. The following season the excavation will be continued at this area.

 

Besides pottery, various small finds were collected. Among them there are 4 pieces of clay figurines and part of a marble hellenistic figurine, most probably a portrait of Alexander the Great [pl. 5-7].

 

 

 

For and On Behalf of

Hellenic Research Institute of Alexandrian Civilization

 

Calliope Limneos-Papakosta

Director

To

Antiquity Service of Alexandria

Department of Foreign Missions Affairs Cairo, Egypt

Subject: Excavation Report

According to the permission from the Supreme Council of Antiquities we started the fourteenth excavation season on 21st of September.

 

Zone 2/N

During the first ten days we cleaned the area and removed modern debris from the eastern side of the site.

We started excavating at the NE part of the main area of the site, right to the north of the previously revealed Ptolemaic foundation which runs to the West-East direction, at an area 5,50m. x 3,50m. At the depth of c. 7,50m. from the surface ground, a layer of uneven breccia was found, about 0,80m. thick [pl.1].

We continued by helding a sounding, 5,40m. x 4,20m., further to the east. After removing a layer of modern debris, at the depth of c. 4,00m. from the surface ground, architectural remains were revealed. They consist part of the late roman/early byzantine workshop complex that has been excavated in previous seasons [pl.2].

At the depth of c. 9, 00m. from the surface ground, right to west of this constructions, a row of the limestone blocks that belong to the Ptolemaic foundation was unearthed at the axis N-W. It starts from the outer (southern) line of the foundation and possibly it was made as a double row, though the eastern blocks have been broken by the workshop remains [pl.3].

The amount of findings from these archaeological layers is significant. Among the findings stands a marble section of sculpture. It is the part of a lower leg, namely the toes together with the sandal [pl.4].

Working has also been done at the area of the roman hydraulic mortar – made floor, most specifically into the tunnel underneath. A considerable amount of mud was removed from the interior. After the cleaning, traces of fire were detected on the sides and the ceiling of the tunnel, which is dug into the layer of breccia. At each side, a formation of well dressed stones was found, preserving up to three superimposed rows at places. It seems to be a kind of water canal [pl.5].

Excavation work has also been done, at the southern part of the site, where the section of the roman road is preserved. Firstly, we held a sounding, 4,00m. x 4,00m., at the eastern preserved part of the road, in order to explore its continuation. The road was found destroyed by constructions of later date, apart from a small part that was found in place. Despite the heavy destruction, the presence of displaced irregular black stones, which belonged to the road, made clear that it continued further to this direction. Also, part of the canalization for the waste water was found, though also destroyed at this area [pl.6].

At the area, where the road was preserved, we extended the trench 4,50m. further to the south and 8,00m to the east. The total section of the roman road that was found at place, measures 3,70m x 4,00m. The rest of it has been destroyed by heavy constructions that seem to belong to the Islamic fortification system. They run to the axis NE-SW, though the southern is slightly out of the axis line of the northern. Both are made by irregular small size limestones compacted into a white mortar. The western side of them preserves a facet of medium size semi dressed limestones, preserved at the height of 2,00m. The continuation of the excavation may reveal more about their plan and the way they connect [pl.7].

Zone 2/K

 

We extended the last season’s trench K further to the west about c. 11,50m. (trench: 11,50m. x 9,60m.)

The heavy construction that had been found at the south part of the excavation trench is continuing further to the west. It is made by small and medium rough and semi dressed lime stones compacted into a white mortar and has a stepped facet at its north part. Most possibly it belongs to the Islamic fortification system.

 

At the northern part of the trench, after the removal of a layer of modern debris, a precinct-like construction was revealed. It is made by a double row of walls, which they are constructed by big size blocks with a space between them, wide about a meter. The precinct runs to the axis of W-E. Its southern wall preserves, up to now, 3 rows of blocks and the northern 2. The revealed length of it measures 2,30m. and its excavated height is 1,35m. Its eastern part is destructed by the late 19th century water-canal that was revealed during the work of last season. Toward the west the excavation is still in progress. Further excavation work needs to be done in order to date the construction [pl.8].

 

Right to the south of it a well of quadrate shape was unearthed measuring 0,85m. x 0,65m and 2,30m. height. It is built of fine dressed medium size limestones which they preserve carvings at the inner side presumably a kind of stepping system. At the depth of 1,20 m. at its north side there is an tunnel at the axis N-S. The sides of the tunnel are built by the same kind of limestones and its ceiling by clay tiles. The exact use of this construction is still unknown, though the well most possibly is a ventilation shaft [pl.9].

For and on Behalf of

Hellenic Research Institute of Alexandrian Civilization

Calliope Limneos-Papakosta

Director