Ancient Greek ‘Dragon Homes’ Still Standing

They call them “drakospita” (dragon homes), even though they have nothing to do with dragons, but their architecture is still admired today for its simplicity and endurance.

The drakospita in Evia, central Greece are built of square, oblong and relatively thin stones, which are placed on top of each other without any binding materials, standing in place only by their weight.

Gaps are filled with smaller stones, while the roof is elaborately made of huge, thicker stones. A long hole in the middle of the facade is left for the light to go through.

Initially it was thought that they were devotional buildings, but archaeologists are not certain if that is the case. They are estimated to belong to the early Hellenistic times (5th-4th century BC).

Drakospita still stand near Styra, Karystos and the peaks of Mount Ochi. Locals believe they were farmhouses, shelters or military structures.

Most of them are preserved in excellent condition and there are no signs of binding materials. Near them, archaeologists have found animal bones, vase fragments and sacrificial remains.

Some of the best preserved ones are located in Styra, in the so-called Palli-Lakka complex. It consists of three farmhouses dating back to the Classical to Hellenistic eras. They are made of the famous Karystian stone.