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'Palace of Ajax' found in Greece
'Palace of Ajax' found in Greece

'Palace of Ajax' found in Greece

BBC
March 29, 2006


Greek archaeologists say they have unearthed the remains of a 13th Century BC palace linked to the legendary warrior-king Ajax.

In Homer's classic tale The Iliad the Achaean hero Ajax the Great fought duels with Hector in the Trojan War.

The Mycenaean-era complex found on the small island of Salamis near Athens covers about 750 sq m (8,070 sq ft).

The chief archaeologist said it was a rare case where a palace could be attributed to a famous Homeric hero.

Yiannis Lolos said travellers and archaeologists had been looking for the site "from the early 19th Century".

The ancient complex on Salamis was built on four levels and had at least 33 rooms.

Artefacts of Cypriot and Anatolian origin found at the site testified to the ancient city's links with the eastern Mediterranean.

A bronze armour fragment found there was stamped with the royal mark of Pharaoh Ramses II of Egypt, who ruled in the 13th Century BC.

Salamis was also the site of a 480BC Greek naval victory over the Persians which spelled the end of their invasion of Greece.

In Homer's Iliad, Ajax was a great asset to King Agamemnon's army, with a reputation for strength and courage.

At one point Ajax fought off the Trojan warriors almost single-handed, in stark contrast to his cousin Achilles, who could not be induced to fight.


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