The Macedonian Tombs

In the fertile plain at the foot of Vermio, between Kopanos, Lefkada and Naoussa, the archeological dig brought to light and continues to reveal the remains of an ancient city, which is identified with Mieza, one of the most important cities of the Macedonian kingdom in the period of its heyday (4th-2nd century BC). The most eloquent elements come from the cemeteries and burial monuments of the area, which saved us the second most important set of Macedonian tombs after Vergina. A total of six Macedonian tombs were found in the area. They have all the typical features of the monumental Macedonian tombs. It is worth noting that the frescoes of the Macedonian tombs are the only surviving specimens of ancient Greek painting on a large scale. As it can be seen from Vergina, these monuments were family tombs of members of the upper social hierarchy, probably associated with the royal dynasty. And perhaps it is no coincidence that the densest concentration of monumental Macedonian tombs is located in the area of Mieza, where the two capitals of the Macedonian kingdom, Vergina and Pella, were located. A unique case is the tomb of Lysonas and Kalliklis (around 200 BC), as here are written the names of the first buried dead – Lysonos and Kallikleous of Aristophanes – as well as the names of at least four generations of the same family. One of the most important known Macedonian tombs is the tomb of the Judgement (late 4th – early 3rd century BC), as it is one of the largest and most imposing monuments of its kind. The subject of the Judgment of the Dead is known from the written tradition, but it is rarely found in ancient Greek iconography.
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