Thursday, April 24, 2008

Vergina: Was Philip II's Tomb Looted in Antiquity?

The stunning finds from Tomb II at Vergina in Macedonia have frequently been taken to be associated with Philip II of Macedon. Eugene N. Borza and Olga Palagia have now talked about why they think the accepted interpretation is incorrect (Sara Goudarzi, "Alexander the Great's "Crown," Shield Discovered?", National Geographic News, April 23, 2008).

Borza comments:
Tomb II is a generation later than Philip II's death.
I agree with this interpretation as the weight inscriptions on the silver from Tomb II cannot, in my view, be earlier than the reign of Alexander the Great (if they were applied in Macedonia). My research (which is due to be published this summer) seems to be cited (without acknowledgement):
a number of silver vessels discovered in Tomb II and Tomb III are inscribed with their ancient weights, which use a measurement system introduced by Alexander the Great a generation after Philip II's death.
So where was Philip II buried? My hunch is that Tomb I is a likely candidate—and that it was looted in 274 BCE.

Who do I think was buried in Tomb II? You will have to wait and see ...

Image
The plain at Vergina from the Royal Palace © David Gill

11 comments:

David Gill said...

See also:
a. AIA papers: "The Chronology of the Royal Macedonian Tombs at Vergina".
b. Report from AIA 2008.

David Gill said...

For Olga Palagia's lecture, "The Tomb of Philip at Vergina: Which Philip?. This gives a reference to:
E. N. Borza and O. Palagia, "The Chronology of the Royal Macedonian Tombs at Vergina," JdI 123 (2008), forthcoming [JdI website]

advocatus diaboli said...

That's a theory. The other theory by professor Andronikos, says that the tomb that has been found at Vergina was the roayl tomb of Philippos. You should say something about that, too. Because Palagia and Borza have not examined the findings, have they?

David Gill said...

My views are now in press. The issue is about the identity of the person buried in Tomb II - not if Philip II was buried at Vergina.

Konstantinos Chilidis said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Konstantinos Chilidis said...

It is worth mentioning that all participants in the AIA session on the chronology of the royal Macedonian tombs at Vergina are scholars who traditionally have rejected Andronikos' interpretation. But for those of us who have followed the “Tomb II controversy”, it is well known that they represent just one side of the dispute. Therefore, I would have wished to see also some other names on this list, especially from those advocating the other side. This would have definitely given us a more balanced approach to this long lasting discussion. In any case, it will be interesting to read the forthcoming articles and see if they really add something substantial to the debate.

David Gill said...

My work will appear later this summer. I do not wish to use this posting for a debate that strays too far from looting and the antiquities market. Tomb I was looted in antiquity ...

I was very struck in the 'History Lost' exhibition by the question about what would have happened if the contents of Tomb II had been looted in recent times. Yet we know that elite burials in Macedonia have been looted to provide material for collections outside Greece.

David Gill said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Konstantinos Chilidis said...

I agree with you that this has nothing to do with looting, but it is worth mentioning that all participants in the AIA session on the chronology of the royal Macedonian tombs at Vergina are scholars who traditionally have rejected Andronikos' interpretation. But for those of us who have followed the “Tomb II controversy”, it is well known that they represent just one side of the dispute. Therefore, I would have wished to see also some other names on this list, especially from those advocating the other side. This would have definitely given us a more balanced approach to this long lasting discussion. In any case, it will be interesting to read the forthcoming articles and see if they really add something substantial to the debate.

David Gill said...

Konstantinos Chilidis writes:

It is worth mentioning that all participants in the AIA session on the chronology of the royal Macedonian tombs at Vergina are those who traditionally have rejected Andronikos' interpretation. But for those of us who have followed the “Tomb II controversy”, it is well known that they represent just one side of the dispute. Therefore, I would have wished to see also some other names on this list especially from those advocating the other side and have a more balanced approach to this long lasting discussion. In any case, it will be interesting to read the forthcoming articles and see if they really add something substantial to the debate.

Gaba said...

I believe Philip the 11 was not buried in tomb 11. I believe that all the royal family are buried in the temple both King and wife are buried in the respective burials according the the tradition of that time.However we dont have concrete evidence of the skeleton that was found belong to Philip the second, but otherwise there is contradicting evidence of how the kings and their wives were buried.The Antiquity found clearly show that it was not in Philip 11's era bur that of later Alexander the greats era. Majak

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