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Makronisos

Photos and description

Not far from Makronissos, the most famous beach resort of Ayia NAPA - are no less famous rock tombs. This place gained fame and became popular thanks to the built in XVI century, the monastery of the Holy virgin Mary. And, according to one version, it was selected for burials because it was there, some 500 years before the first tomb was discovered the icon of the virgin.

The cave complex Makronisos were created in the Greco-Roman period and consists of 19 small tombs carved directly in the rock, and shrines, built of rough stones. And next to them are the quarry. Almost all caves have the same layout: from the entrance to them are stairs and almost each of them is a rectangular room, along the walls of which are three or four stone benches. The entrance is usually covered with a plate carved from limestone.

In the middle of XIX century tombs became interested in "black archeologists", who simply plundered a burial. But large-scale official excavations at the site began only at the end of the last century, namely in 1989. Archaeologists determined that the bodies of the deceased were placed in sarcophagi, which were made from clay, and then stacked in crypts. According to the Greek tradition next bred ceremonial funeral pyres

Despite the fact that on the territory of Makronissos still being excavated, the entrance to the tombs are completely free. And they are under the protection of the International archaeological society.