Remains of oldest houses found at Nea Paphos

Archaeologists conducting excavations at the ancient city of Nea Paphos, Cyprus, discovered remains of the oldest buildings at the site, dating back 2400 years.

Overview of the Hellenistic House and Villa of Theseus (by Maciej Jawornicki)

The latest season of excavations at the area of the residential quarter by the Institute of Mediterranean and Oriental Cultures of Polish Academy of Sciences resulted in the discovery of one of the oldest structures constructed within the ancient city. The buildings found by archaeologists functioned between the 4th cent. BC and 7th cent. AD. Archaeologists so far established that since the beginning the buildings were laid out in a regular grid, with individual plots measuring 100 by 35 metres. The construction of buildings in the studied area was preceded by creation of a water supply system.

Oldest housing traces (by Henryk Meyza)

The latest construction, considered one of the oldest in the city, was discovered under the so-called Hellenistic House, excavated since the 1980s. The unearthed, deepest remains were dated to between 4th-5th cent. BC, to the period in which the city was founded by the last king of the Kingdom of Paphos, who moved the capital from Palea Paphos to Nea Paphos. The floor of the oldest building consisted of a threshing floor, which in later centuries was covered with stone tiles or mosaics.

Part of a cistern (by Henryk Meyza)

Archaeologists estimate that they managed to uncover about 10 percent of Nea Paphos so far. It is at this point impossible to reconstruct the layout of the oldest city, because the excavations are conducted in such places which allow for research without damaging the younger walls placed over the oldest remains. The research has been focused on open spaces of the city, such as squares or courtyards.

(after Nauka w Polsce, Henryk Meyza & Maciej Jawornicki)

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