The Ministry of Culture and Sports announced the new finds from the archeological project known as “Bay of Κoilada”, at Lampayannas, in south Argolis. The “Bay of Κoilada” project is headed by the Ephorate of Underwater Antiquities in collaboration with the University of Geneva and under the auspices of the Swiss School of Archaeology in Greece. It aims to study sunken prehistoric sites in a small bay in south Argolis, near the well known archaeological site of the Frangthi cave.
In 2015, quite a large Early Bronze Age settlement (at least 1.2 hectares) was located off the beach of Lampayannas, north of the bay. Some architectural remains are visible on the sea bed, at a depth of 1-3 metres, while more could be buried under the marine sediments. Since 2016, the survey has focused on exploring the settlement’s area and its chronological dating.
The 2017 survey began with underwater topography and geophysical measurements. In continuation of the previous work on the Lampayannas beach, the architectural remains visible on the sea bed were mapped to a greater extent and the electrical resistivity tomography was continued north of the beach, in shallow waters. Preliminary results indicate the existence of more complex buildings as well as many buried architectural remains.
Underwater excavations followed over a larger area than in 2016 and with improved methods. Beneath the layer of the Early Helladic II era (mid-3rd millennium BC, to which correspond the visible architectural remains on the sea bed), a wall was discovered of the Proto Helladic I era (early 3rd millennium). Another earlier layer was also investigated that could be dated to the transitional period between the Neolithic and the Early Bronze Age. The finds include large quantities of shells of the murex purpurea (purple fish). It is however still impossible to determine their use.
The 2017 survey, lasting from July 3 to August 11, was conducted by Dr Angeliki Simosi, Head of the Ephorate of Underwater Antiquities, and Professor Karl Reber, Head of the Swiss Archaeological School in Greece.