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nOVOpOtJIKJ] irrrolllrl TOU IEPOU Tile; Bpaupwviae; APTi:tJllioe;.

TO IEPO THl: APTEMIAOl: l:TH BP A YPQNA



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TOV TpOnO nou cneucovlzerct T] Ell<ovi~TOIIj AToAcivTIj. (Mouo. BpoupwvoC;)

79

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81

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The Sanctuary of Artemis at Vravron

K.Efstratiou

82

On the eastern coast 01 Attica, between the present Porto-Rafti and Ralina, one of the most Important sanctuaries of the antiquity flourished that was dedicated to the great goddess 01 nature, Artemis. Ute at the Vravrona vicinity commences in the Neolithic Age (3.500 BC). Until the end of the Mycenean era settlement is confined on the rocky hill - the prehistoric acropolis - towering at the south part of the valley. A cemetery, dating from the end 01 the Mycenean period, has been excavated on the slopes of the neighbouring hill, called Lapoutsi. Since the Geometric years, when the first temple is erected, the sanctuary

j\PTE~IC:; T~<: 8pouptiJvoc:;. AvCiyAu410 TaU 40u 01. n .. X.

becomes famous. The Important demos of Phllaldes was located at the area, a demos which supplied Athens with renowned politicians and military. During Peisistratos' tyrrany in the sixth century Be Athens, an edifice with a stoa, the socalled Vravronelon, was erected next to the Chalkotheke and dedicated to Artemis Vravronia.

In the fifth century BC the sanctuary reached its climax. The cores. Doric temple was built. the brigde was constructed and the stoa was erected In which the so-called -arktcr .. ("bears) were staying. The site has been related to the sacrifice of Iphigenia, which took

place before the departure of the Greek fleet for the Trojan war. The young offsprings of the Athenian families used to perform here the Artctaia ritual by imitating bears.

The archaeological finds from the excevauons conducted there by the most gifted archaeologist Joannis Papademetriou are very rich and witness the cult of the great prehistoric goddess Artemis. aero-woven dresses, jewelry. mirrors. vases. statuettes and other offerings are dedicated to the goddess Artemis as well as to her priestess Iphigenia who, according to a myth, has been buried here.