January 9, 2013

Very neat

Filed under: Biblical archaeology, Historic — acagle @ 8:04 pm

Mud may have preserved Turkish city 700 years ago, archaeologists say

In the fourth century A.D., a bishop named Nicholas transformed the city of Myra, on the Mediterranean coast of what is now Turkey, into a Christian capital.

Nicholas was later canonized, becoming the St. Nicholas of Christmas fame. Myra had a much unhappier fate.

After some 800 years as an important pilgrimage site in the Byzantine Empire it vanished — buried under 18 feet of mud from the rampaging Myros River. All that remained was the Church of St. Nicholas, parts of a Roman amphitheater and tombs cut into the rocky hills.

But now, 700 years later, Myra is reappearing.

Couple of nice photos, especially the cross on the altar one, which is a very clever design feature — I wonder if the cross is centered on the altar at some important date in the Christian calendar? It’s apparently also protected by modern buildings.

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