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The ancient city of Idalion

Photos and description

The area, which was once the ancient city of Idalion is located in the present area of Nicosia, not far from Dali city.

The city that existed about three thousand years ago, was one of the first Cypriot city-States, among nine similar settlements mentioned in the annals of the Assyrian king Esarhaddon, where there was a democratic structure. In addition, it even had its own school of art.

Than the most valuable results of the excavations on the site of Idalion, it's the fact that they give a clear idea about the religion and beliefs of the time. The most revered gods in the city was considered Athena and Aphrodite. In honor of the last and the city was named as one of the names of Aphrodite in Latin sounds like "Italia". According to one legend it was on this spot Ares killed her lover Adonis.

Excavations in this area began in the mid-nineteenth century, when in 1868 the British traveller LEng stumbled on the ruins of the temple where the inscriptions on Cypriot and Phoenician languages. This temple was dedicated to Aphrodite, or as it was called in Cyprus, Vanese - the goddess of the Sky. Moreover, as scientists believe, the temple is also worshipped her "spouse" Wanaka - the Lord of the animals. In this sanctuary, which, judging by the found fragments, were decorated with painted stucco, there were stone altars, pits for ashes and vertical rocks, symbolizing deities.

At the moment, on the site of the ancient village are still being excavated. To date, there are already found a lot of values that are stored in the Museum, located next to the ruins. For example, archaeologists have found terracotta figurines, fragments of dishes and lamps. Particularly noteworthy are the sculptures - since the limestone from which they are made is sufficiently soft material, the masters has been amazing to work out the details of the figures and entities.

Unfortunately, many found in the ruins of Idalion treasures were taken out of the island.