Archaeologists unearthed two 2,500-year-old marble statues and an inscription during excavations at the Temple of Zeus Lepsinos, one of the best-preserved Roman temples of Asia Minor, in Turkey’s western Muğla province. Built in the second century AD, the temple is located in the ancient city of Euromos.
Abuzer Kızıl, head of the excavation committee and faculty member at Muğla Sıtkı Kocman University’s department of archaeology, told Anadolu Agency (AA) Sunday that the sculptures were found unexpectedly during the restoration efforts.
“We have unearthed two very important links of the missing Archaic sculpture of the Carian region, and an inscription dating to the Hellenistic period,” he said.
Kızıl added that the sculptures were categorized as kouros, a modern term given to free-standing ancient Greek sculptures of the Archaic period.
“One of the two kouroi unearthed at Euromos is naked, the other is wearing armour and a short chiton. The armour is made of leather and it is remarkable that both statues have a lion in their hands. Iconographically, the lion holds great significance… and is likely associated with the god Apollo,” Kızıl said.
Kızıl said the inscription from the Hellenistic period is expected to reveal important insights on the history of the region, and efforts to decipher it are continuing.