1. Skip to content
  2. Skip to main menu
  3. Skip to more DW sites
The remains of a housing settlement in the ancient city of Tenea in southern Greece
Image: picture-alliance/dpa/ Greek Culture Ministry

Greece locates lost ancient city

November 14, 2018

A city thought to be founded by survivors of the Trojan War has been located in Greece. After years of excavations, archaeologists have collected tangible evidence of a city that previously only existed in ancient texts.


The ruins of a housing settlement and dozens of rare coins have confirmed the location of the ancient city of Tenea, Greece's culture ministry announced on Tuesday.

Excavations at a site in the southern Greek region of Peloponnese turned up "proof of the existence of the ancient city," the ministry said in a statement.

The city of Tenea is believed to have been founded by Trojans who were taken prisoner during the Trojan War in the 12th or 13th century BCE.

Until now, the city had only been mentioned in ancient texts and it was unknown whether it existed.

Read more: Team finds world's oldest intact shipwreck in Black Sea

Greek history in a video game

'Evidence of life and death'

Main excavations in the area started in 2013, the most recent excavations unearthed seven graves dating to the Roman era and Hellenistic period, as well as the remnants of a housing settlement.

"It is significant that the remnants of the city, the paved roads, the architectural structure, came to light," lead archaeologist Eleni Korka told Reuters news agency.

The dig revealed marble and stone floors of buildings as well as carefully constructed walls. Some 200 rare coins dating from the 4th century BCE were also unearthed as well, indicating that Tenea was very wealthy, Korka said.

Read more: Acropolis remained closed - tourists are angry

The graves contained vases and jewelry — with the skeleton of a woman and child found in one of the graves.

In an unusual find, archaeologists discovered a jar containing the remains of two human fetuses in the foundations of one building. Ancient Greeks typically buried their dead in organized cemeteries outside the city walls.

"We've found evidence of life and death [...] and all this is just a small part of the history of the place," said Korka. "The coming years will allow us to evaluate where we stand."

rs/rc (Reuters, AP)

Each evening at 1830 UTC, DW's editors send out a selection of the day's hard news and quality feature journalism. You can sign up to receive it directly here.

Skip next section Explore more
Skip next section Related topics

Related topics

Skip next section DW's Top Story

DW's Top Story

Bundeskanzler Olaf Scholz beim Kampfpanzer Leopard 2 A6 der Bundeswehr

How do Germany and the EU fund military gear to Ukraine?

Skip next section More stories from DW
Go to homepage