Ancient Palaestra Discovered in Greece’s Eretria



The palaestra in Eretria. Photo by iefimerida

A new public building that dates back to the 4th century BC was discovered in the archaeological site of Eretria, in Greece’s Evia island.

The Swiss archaeological school of Greece conducted the research under the supervision of Evia’s Ephorate of Antiquities and its head, Angeliki Simosi.

The site was first revealed in 1917 by the Greek archaeologist Constantine Kourouniotis, but it took 101 years for the first efforts to start in order to reveal the building.

Photo by iefimerida

It is one of the very few palaestras that have been discovered, something that gives valuable information to the scientists about the ancient Greek’s physical education in the area.

A sanctuary dedicated to goddess Eileithyia was also found attached to the north-western part of the palaestra. Eileithyia was the Greek goddess of childbirth and midwifery.

Back in 1917, Kourouniotis had discovered in the same area a water well with around one hundred pottery cups dating to the 3rd century B.C.

Pottery cups found in Eretria