Three Late Antiquity burials have been discovered in Bursa, Turkey, at an olive grove where previously more archaeological finds had been unearthed. The discovery was announced on Sunday. The burial chambers are three in number and are to be examined by archaeologists from Ankara as soon as they manage to arrive in the area and start the excavation.
The olive grove is located near the Hisardere district, 3 miles from İznik’s town centre. One tomb that had been found in the past had been damaged, probably by looters who had hoped to find valuable items inside.
The three new sarcophagi are covered with reliefs of Eros, lotus flowers and figures with lion’s heads. They are said to weigh 4-6 tons and are probably 1,800-2,000 years old.
The findings have been covered by specialists from the İznik Museum Directorate and the area is guarded so that the tombs are not looted until a proper excavation site is established.
The discovery is quite important since specialists believe that the area might have been a necropolis. In September a sarcophagus of the same period had been accidentally discovered in the area and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism has been carrying out expropriation work at the site. Also, a sarcophagus associated by several sources with a queen was found in the same area in 2015, but it had already been looted. Previously discovered burial chambers also bore depictions of Greek mythological figures, such as Eros, Hercules and Medusa.