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AEGEAN ISLANDS

Karthaia

It is the most important archaeological site of the island. According to the findings, it must have been the most important of Kea’s Tetrapolis (league of the four cities). It started being inhabited during the Late Bronze period, but it flourished in the Classical period. The first excavations in the area took place in the early 19th century by a Danish expedition, which embezzled many findings and distributed them to museums and collections throughout Europe. The exhibition of the excavation became the cause for even more thefts and it is certain that really important objects have been lost or destroyed. In the early 20th century, a French expedition discovered the temple of Athena and in the ‘60s the ancient theatre was brought to light. Since then many excavations have been conducted with conservation and restoration projects. Important findings are now exhibited in the Archaeological Museum of Ioulis. The bay of Karthaia and the neighboring Poles were the natural ports which served the needs of the residents. For its protection there was a wall with bastions and towers, part of which is preserved today. The two Doric temples of the archaeological site are located in the southern section of the acropolis. The temple of Athena was built circa 500 BC. At the same time the temple of Apollo was built above the sea level, and according to archaeologists, it had sculptures with subjects from the Trojan war. Info You will find detailed information about Karthaia at the site of the Foundation of Hellenic World www2.egeonet.gr    
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The neolithic settlement of Kefala

* At cape Kefala, on the northwestern coast of Kea, an outdoor settlement of the Final Neolithic or Chalcolithic period (late 4th century, circe 3300 BC) was found. The small community lived in rectangular, stone-built houses and they were involved with agriculture, cattle-breeding, basketry, fishing and maritime trade (Melian obsidian), as well as metallurgy, as evidenced by the traces of copper smelters. The cemetery of the settlement consists of built, rectangular and circular, individual or common graves. It is considered to be the first organized cemetery in the Aegean outside the settlement. The findings and offerings of Kefala integrate it in the cultural phase of Attica-Aegena of the Final Neolithic period, which is not found anywhere else in the Cyclades. This element makes the position of Kea really important in the prehistoric Aegean, since along with the Cave of Za in Naxos (Late and Final Neolithic period) and the phase of Late Neolithic peiod from Saliagos of Antiparos they provide useful information about the appearence and the evolution in the Aegean of the transitional period between the Stone age and the Bronze age.     * Source: www2.egeonet.gr   
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The area took its name from the chapel that dominates above the bay. The ruins of the settlement show traces of habitation from the Neolithic period (3300-3200 BC) to the end of the Bronze era (1200-1100 BC). According to excavations, the settlement was destroyed by natural causes and the houses were repaired with the use of older materials –thus the dating is difficult.
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