Agora excavation in Aizanoi to shed light on trade life of ancient city
The recent excavation of the agora in the ancient city of Aizanoi in western Türkiye is expected to shed new light on the city’s trade life, said a Turkish official.
Speaking to Anadolu, Kutahya Governor Ali Celik said that the excavations carried out in the region have gained great momentum recently.
Noting that most of the shops in the ancient bazaar of the city, called Agora, will be uncovered this year, Celik said: “We started to uncover the agora and the work intensified here.”
“The excavations of five shops in the agora are expected to be completed this year,” Celik added.
“By uncovering the agora, we will integrate the Temple of Zeus, the trade areas, and the monumental structures of the city from that period,” he added.
Celik emphasized that the complete exposure of the agora will shed light on the commercial life of Aizanoi.
Located 57 kilometers (35 miles) from the Kutahya city center, the ancient site saw its golden age in the second and third centuries AD and became “the center of the episcopacy in the Byzantine era,” according to the website of the Turkish Culture and Tourism Ministry.
Recent excavations around the Temple of Zeus indicate the existence of several levels of settlement in the city dating from as far back as 3000 BC. In 133 BC, it was captured by the Roman Empire.
In 1824, European travelers rediscovered the ancient site.
Between 1970 and 2011, the German Archeology Institute unearthed a theater and a stadium, as well as two public baths, a gymnasium, five bridges, a trading building, necropolises, and the sacred cave of Metre Steune – a cultist site thought to be used prior to the first century BC.
Since 2011, Turkish archeologists have been carrying out work at the ancient site. This year, the excavations were transferred to the Kutahya Museum Directorate.
The site was included in the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List in 2012.