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Archaeological excavations at Geronissos Island completed

The New York University Geronissos Island (Ayios Georgios tis Peyia) expedition under the direction of Professor Joan Breton Connelly has wrapped up five weeks of excavations in the area including an ancient submerged harbour.

The project involves the collaboration of an international team and includes the University of Haifa’s Recanati Institute for Maritime Studies that carried out preliminary underwater surveys around Geronissos Island and Manikis Harbour.

A well as the University of Haifa’s Laboratory for Coastal Archaeology and Underwater Survey the Maritime Workshop and the Centre for Mediterranean History also participated.

The team continued its excavation on Geronissos Island, explored its surrounding waters and conducted an underwater survey of Manikis Harbour, which is located just south of Agios Georgios tis Peyia.

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This ancient port served as the main harbour for the ancient settlement at Agios Georgios and Geronissos from the Hellenistic through early Byzantine periods.

On Geronissos, Professor Pieter of Middlebury College continued work on late Ptolemaic architectural remains.

Further connections with Hellenistic Alexandria are supported by the work of Dr Luca Cherstich, Oxford PhD and authority on Ptolemaic rock-cut tombs of Cyrenaica.

He continued his study of local tombs in the Agios Georgios area in an effort to understand better the people who lived and died on the mainland just opposite of Geronissos Island.

Professor Dimitris Plantzos of the University of Athens continued his study of the unique Geronissos stamp-seal amulets that find fascinating parallels at Edfu in Egypt.

Professor Jolanta Mlynarczyk of the University of Warsaw continued her study of the Geronissos pottery, whilst Dr Mariusz Burdajewicz completed work on his publication of the glass finds.

Dr Paul Croft of the Lemba Archaeological Field Station excavated a series of robbing trenches that open onto well-preserved gypsum mortar setting beds, bearing witness to the fact that Geronissos provided a treasure trove of ashlar building blocks stolen away during the first six centuries A.D.

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