PCMA Seminar: A new discovery of a temple in Cyprus at the Latsithkia site?

The PCMA Seminar series is starting after the summer break. During the first meeting, Anna Urszula Kordas, Szymon Popławski and Dr. Aleksandra Brzozowska-Jawornicka will present a paper entitled: “A new discovery of a temple building in Cyprus? Preliminary observations, analyses, and reconstructions of architectural decoration found at the Latsithkia site, the Limassol District”.

Abstract: “In 1997 and 2000, at a hill known as Latsithkia, located near Episkopi in the Limassol District, on the north side of the old Roman road to Kourion, and at the same time at the back of the Apollo Hylates temple, works were carried out under the auspices of the Archaeological Museum of Kourion in Episkopi. As a result of the works, 48 stone architectural elements were gathered from the surface of the site, inventoried, and deposited in the Museum. However, until now the material has not been studied nor published.

This lecture will present preliminary observations, analyses, and reconstructions of the architectural decorations, within which was observed a coherent set of the elements: the Attic bases, plain column drums, the Corinthian type blocked-out capitals, an architrave block, cornices with plain modillions, and different kinds of moldings. Moreover, a big round pedestal and a very interesting fragment of a window frame or a niche were found. On the side, the frame is decorated with a pilaster and a Corinthian blocked-out capital, on the topmost the frame is adorned with a semi-circular cornice, and the whole niche or window, most probably, was surmounted by a triangular pointed pediment. It seems to be the first attestation of this type of decoration in Cyprus.

Photogrammetric documentation of the elements and preliminary reconstructions based on it indicate that the collection of architectural elements could be prepared for one building endeavor. Preliminary observations of the elements from this site could suggest that they were elaborated for a temple. Although the architectural decoration from the Latsithkia hill, is quite similar to that of the Temple of Apollo Hylates in Kourion, and of the Temple of Aphrodite in Amathus, it is of visible smaller proportions and of different architectural details. Nevertheless, as no excavations have ever been carried out on the Latsithkia hill and no foundations of the building have been observed on the surface, we cannot yet answer the question of whether this place was the quarry where the stone was exploited and processed, or it was also the place where this building stood.”

The seminar will be held online on Monday, September 25th at 10 am GMT+2 on the Zoom platform.

To receive the link, please write to pcma@uw.edu.pl

The research project presented during the seminar and preparation of architectural documentation were supported by the University of Warsaw IDUB (Initiative of Excellence Research University) program grants and the Institute of Art History UW funding for PhD research.