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by Archaeology Newsroom

The Ancient Town of Chalkis (part I)

Special effort has been recently given to the research, archaeological finds and other relevant information that compose the history of the town-planning of ancient Chalkis on the island of Euboea. The drawing up of the archaeological map of the town and the work done in the Archaeological Museum of Chalkis will finally produce, we hope, a complete picture of the ancient town, which played a pioneering role in colonization in the 8th century BC, was famous for its workshops of metalwork and pottery and gloriously defended Hellenism during the Middle Ages. The destructions and devastations that occurred at a later time along with the modern irrational building activity have, unfortunately, extensively destroyed the ancient monuments and have distorted the physiognomy of the environment in which the ancient town was developed. An effort for the determination of the terminus post and ante quem of the history of Chalkis, that is, of its foundation and of its abandonment l transfer, has been undertaken in order to facilitate the work in process. After the early inhabitation of the Chalkis Peninsula in the Mycenaean age (15th- 13th century BC), an intense human activity develops there during the proto-geometric period (11th-9th centuries BC). All archaeological evidence , however, points to the fact that the proto-Geometric settlement consisted of four or five separate small villages, scattered on the hills of the peninsula (that of Agios Ioannis, Kallimani, Gyftika, Vrondou). The inhabitants used to bury their dead in tombs on the slopes of these hills and were a rural, reserved population without any trade activities or connections.