Archaeological Museum of Arta:

Entrance of a house:

The central exhibition space  has been reserved for the simulation of a classical/hellenistic style household in Ambracia. In this simulation one can walk through and look at the exhibits as they would have been arranged within a household. One enters the room stepping past a glass door where original iron nails, decorated with copper nail covers, a knocker and a doorknob have been fixed in order to simulate a double door. The visitor then proceeds over the actual threshold of an ancient residence. Stepping on the threshold of a house still has a special social significance, so it has been displayed in a way that makes the visitor really feel that.

At the left there is another display on the floor, with a sample of what an egkanio would have looked like. Before building a house,  the citizens of Ambracia would place in a small pit miniature vessels- or more rarely actual ones if they were well-off-, along with figurines and furniture models. Then libations would be offered at the spot and the sacrifice of a small animal or bird would follow. The pit would be then sealed under the floor.

The ritual of egkainio first appears in the 6th century B.C and it seems to have been practiced up until 3rd century B.C. Just like in modern day foundation ceremonies, the goal is to propitiate the Gods, ensuring the well being of the house.

Archaeological Museum of Isthmia:

Βlack and White tessellated floor with marine scenes, from the Roman Bathhouse.

Archaeological Museum of Arta:

A certain group of clay urns- usually in the shape of hydrias and amphoras- were sealed with a led, or clay top, with the name of the deceased engraved on them. (3rd century B.C)

Archaeological Museum of Arta:

Fragments of jewellery and funerary wreaths from hellenistic burials, with clay beads, flowers, and acorns that would have been gold-plated and/or painted.

These clay additions of funerary wreaths are becoming more and more exciting with each encounter. The most impressive and best preserved wreaths with them are to be found at the Archaeological Museum of Patra.

Archaeological Museum of Arta:

Fragments of jewellery and funerary wreaths from hellenistic burials, with clay beads, flowers, and acorns that would have been gold-plated and/or painted.

These clay additions of funerary wreaths are becoming more and more exciting with each encounter. The most impressive and best preserved wreaths with them are to be found at the Archaeological Museum of Patra.

Archaeological Museum of Arta:

Hellenistic burials with cinerary urns and personal effects.

It’s no secret that a great percentage of the finds displayed at museums comes from graves. However, they are very often exhibited in a way that removes them from the funerary context. To many of us they appear as objects of art; determined by the style of an era. The museum of Arta really does a good job at bringing that special context back in a series of displays that are meant to resuscitate the remembrance for these individuals. We do not view just the objects here, but the “final residence” of someone’s humanity.

Archaeological Museum of Ancient Nemea:

Mat impression on the bottom of a vessel (3100-2700 B.C)

Archaeological Museum of Chaironeia/ Nafplion Archaeological Museum:

Impressions on the bottom of prehistoric vessels (impression of a mat and impression of a grape leaf)

I really love these impressions, more than anything they are imprints of fragile and vulnerable things to time. To me they also carry all the human activity surrounding them. And that is the charm of objects. Lingering through time they preserve something from the essence of the people that are long dead and forgotten.

Archaeological Museum of Nicopolis:

Fragments of mosaics from basilicas and residences in Nicopolis (5th-6th century A.D)

The bridge of Arta:

The bridge of Arta, right over the river Arachthos has a long history beginning during the hellenistic times, when the first stone bases were erected. Throughout history there have been many additions, alterations and restorations. On the hellenistic bases, the great four arches were erected during the first years of the Despotate of Epirus. Literary sources agree that the bridge was fully constructed in 1612.

Up until 1881 with the addition of the city of Arta to the independent greek state, this bridge was the frontier between the free Greece and the rest of the now greek territories that were under Ottoman rule.

The bridge of Arta is mostly famous in greek tradition through various folk songs and poems that refer to the gruesome legend of the sacrifice of the chief engineer’s wife, who was built within the bridge to keep it stable.