Tour Ancient Ialyssos on Rhodes
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Rhodes is an island where you will find yourself immersed in history. You can’t take a step in any direction without seeing a piece of the past. The archaeological sites, the castles, and spectacular buildings will transport you back in time. Tour Ancient Ialyssos on Rhodes to experience this history first hand.
History of Ancient Ialyssos
In the village of Triada are the remains of a Minoan settlement. Ancient Ialyssos was one of the three earliest city-states on Rhodes Island. It is located about 15 km from present day Rhodes Town on top of a fortified hill. In 480 BC, along with the other two city-states, ancient Ialyssos formed a confederation to protect themselves. Together, these three would form the capital of Rhodes. The capital stretched from this area to present day Rhodes Town.
The Doric Temple remains on the site today. There was once a Christian basilica on that spot. It was later replaced by a Byzantine monastery that dated to the 6th century. The Byzantines would be captured by the Knights of Saint John and the Knights would claim the monastery as their own and set up the capital in present day Rhodes Town. Ancient Ialyssos was destroyed by Turks who attacked the area.
The Temple of Athena Polias dates back to about the 2nd century BC and was built on the site of a Classical temple. Portions of a 5th century BC floor and terra-cotta antefixes have been found to help date the old temple. On the west side of the temple was a depository that produced pottery and votive offerings that date from the 9th century – 5th century BC.
Excavations that took place in 1914 and 1923-26 by the Italian Archaeological School would reveal the earliest portions of the Temple of Athena and the depository containing pottery, metal objects and figurines that dated back to 9th – 5th century BC
Take a Tour Ancient Ialyssos
During a visit to ancient Ialyssos you will see the following sites, just to name a few: the Temple of Athena is a Doric temple that features amphiprostyle, tetrastyle, and hexastyle. There is also a pronaos, cella, and opisthodomos. In the cella there is the base of a cult statue.
The Doric fountain-house is an interesting structure. There were two tunnels that would deliver water from the top of the hill to a cistern that was cut into the rock. a lions-head would spout the water from the closed cistern into an open tank. the tank was enclosed by six pillars with stone panels in between each. From this area to a portico of six Doric columns would form the 4th century fountain-house.
The Byzantine fortifications are on the east side of the hill. They were constructed using materials from the ancient temple of Athena. Some of the repairs made by the Knights are visible. Immerse yourself in history as you tour ancient Ialyssos.
While on the Greek island of Rhodes, you’ll want to visit the site of Ancient Ialyssos.
This post was written by Greek Boston