Monday, April 04, 2005

Cyclopean Masonry in Nafplio?

So after all the bile swelling our livers had subsided enough to allow us to go back to Nafplio, we went and went in haste because all rooms we had tried to book over the phone were full. The only way to be sure of a room there after the Hotel Kapodistrias had shafted us was to go to Nafplio and find a room.

So we got in the car and scooted over the canal and down to Nafplio and parked in the public parking whatsit, and set off walking around the whole of the old town in a sort of anti-clockwise direction looking for places like hotels and rented rooms which might be suitable for sleeping in. We found plenty of places to sleep, but none had rooms for Easter weekend and we fell back on the Elena Hotel where we had stayed during the 7th Panhellenic Speleological Meeting in October.

So, why all the excitement?

Well, walking through the old town, and in a place where it was totally unexpected, what should we stumble across, but something which I had been searching for for years without success. I had read about it many times, but was always "digging in the wrong place". It is not really surprising that I had not found this thing, given its site and situation.

We were walking along Psaromahala street (I think!) when we went past an abandoned building which did not seem to be in repair-and-rent mode. It was just the front of the building, the fa├žade, and behind there was an empty yard and behind the empty yard was a wall.

And so it was, that after many years, I was finally looking at some of the original fortification of Nafplio / Nauplia. You read about the Mycenaean fortress at Nafplion, and stories of chamber tombs in the rock and what have you, but I had never seen any of this older Nafplio. I had always expected these traces to be up by the Palamidi fortress but of course, it makes so much more sense for them to be here.

I initially got over excited thinking that here was a stretch of legitimate LHIII Mycenaean fortification, but on looking at it in the sober light of Monday morning, back at work, on the computer screen, it looks more like a Hellenistic stretch here. I will add a comment if I ever find out what exactly that this is. It's interesting to see that it would have been right in someone's kitchen or living room originally.

There are two views, one from the road, through the destroyed building, the other from a height a little bit above the yard.

It was the ray of sunshine which made the futile searching for a room more bearable.



The through the window view



The view from above

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