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July 2003-July 2010InteractiveDig Sagalassos
The urban survey team on the slopes to the west of the colonnaded street
The apse of the church or small bath building west of the colonnaded street

Photos courtesy Sagalassos Archaeological Research Project. Click on images to enlarge.
by Marc Waelkens

Urban Survey: July 18-22, 2004

During this second week of urban survey, the team supervised by Femke Martens (KULeuven), covered a surface of 0.6 hectares using the intensive collection technique. They completed the survey of the area south of the Lower Agora and covered the western part of the zone between the first west-east crossing of the main north-south colonnaded street and the promontory of the Hadrian and Antoninus Pius temple. Maximal overlap with the area covered by the geophysical survey was a goal again this week. This area must have formed the main access to the town throughout the Imperial period. Presumably around A.D. 400, a new fortification wall was built that enclosed only the northern part of the colonnaded street. The street may still have been accessible from the south by means of a gate between two towers, but this still needs further study. Further research is also required to establish whether the street running parallel to the colonnaded street was still accessible at this time.

This week's survey revealed evidence for monumental constructions where this parallel street may have pierced the fortification wall. On the platform just south of the fortification wall, we found the blocks of a tall honorific column. Southwest of it, the outlines of a building with a length of ca. 15 m. can be observed. Toward the south, there is an apse composed by still in situ ashlars. All other blocks seemed to have been removed at some point, so it is difficult to reconstruct the building's width. There are two possible interpretations for this structure, which may have been either part of a church or a small bath building of the Southwest Anatolian Type (usually composed of three rooms, of which at least one, the caldarium, has an apsidal wall facing south). The platform on which the building was constructed was accessed via a staircase, blocks of which were still in situ on the steep slope southwest of it. Whatever its function was, this building stood on a prominent location and was highly visible from the main road approaching Sagalassos from the south. The sector within which its remains were found was rich in pottery. But no other finds found near the building provided any further indication of its function, although on the slope just southwest of the building we found dense concentrations of tesserae and marble wall veneer fragments. On the platform further south of the building, we discovered dense amounts of slag that remain to be explained.

Generally, the area to the west of the parallel north-south street was very rich in finds (pottery, metal, tesserae, and vessel and window glass). The provenance of some elements of window and doorframes, combined with the character of the finds, suggests the presence of houses on these southwest and west facing slopes bounding the monumental center. Processing of the pottery finds will inform us about the chronology this area and the impact of the construction of the late Roman fortification wall here. Additional information on that will be provided by the survey of a third area to the northwest of the fortified area, west of the Doric Temple. This last target area of the 2004 urban survey, where work has just started, was also covered by the geophysical survey. This survey revealed the presence of a large building here, just north of the Hellenistic/late Roman fortification wall and parallel to it (see Survey, Geophysical, June 29-July 1) along the presumed northwest access road to the town center.

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