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Welcome

Welcome to the website of the Belgian School at Athens. We are primarily engaged in archaeological research in Greece, which especially includes excavation and survey but also material studies and the publication, presentation and preservation of results. Our main projects are the excavations at Thorikos in South Attica (Lavrion Attikis), and, on the island of Crete, at Sissi (Agiou Nikolaou) and at Itanos (Sitias), both in the Lasithi province.

Apart from these projects, we host a library with a large number of Belgian publications on Greek archaeology, we organise conferences, seminars, courses, and colloquia.

Through this website we hope to reach all those interested in Greek archaeology. Our calendar highlights not only our activities in Greece but also scientific activities related to Greek archaeology organized in Belgium. You can also find guidelines on excavation and research permits, Belgian academic institutions involved in research on Greek soil and heritage

The director
Jan Driessen

Activities in Greece

Numismatic Conference: Coins for the Gods-Coins for the Merchants

Our forthcoming two-day conference on "Coins for the Gods-Coins for the Merchants" starts October 24th and is taking place at the Italian Archaeological School at Athens (SAIA). It is a collaboration with the Center for European Numismatics (CEN-Brussels), the Netherlands Institute at Athens (NIA), the Italian Archaeological School at Athens (SAIA) and the Radboud University Nijmegen. 

The conference is free for the audience. For further information, please contact the organizer, Prof. Panagiotis P. Iossif (piossif@ebsa.info).

When: October 24-25, 2019

Where: the Italian Archaeological School at Athens (SAIA), Parthenonos 14

No registration needed!

2019 Sissi excavation press release

More than a 100 archaeologists of various nationalities participated in the 10th excavation campaign of the Belgian School at Athens at Sissi (Dimos Agios Nikolaos, Crete), in close collaboration with the archaeological service of Lassithi, and under the direction of Prof. Jan Driessen (UCLouvain/EBSA). Work continued in several areas of the site and the team succeeded in revealing most of the monumental court-centred building (photo 1). Continued excavation near the west wing of this complex revealed substantial remains of an early village of Early Minoan IIA date (c. 2600 BCE). After its abandonment, leaving all its material in place, a monumental building was constructed just east of this village, forming the core of the west wing. This building was destroyed by fire in 2500 BCE. Its remains, however, were simply incorporated without much modification in the construction of the court-centred building around 1700 BCE. Further excavation of this complex revealed a finely plastered floor, decorated with splash pattern, and a finely built terracotta drain, originally evacuating the surface waters of the 33 m long central court down the east slope. Elsewhere on the site, extensive traces of hitherto little attested phases were uncovered, including remains of a house destroyed in Middle Minoan IIIA perhaps by earthquake and an extensive Late Minoan II-IIIA1 deposit, showing much Knossian influence. To this same phase dates a cist tomb, inserted within an earlier Neopalatial funerary building (photo 2). The finely built tomb contained a perfectly preserved skeleton of a woman, accompanied by a bronze mirror with ivory handle, bone and bronze cloth pins and a necklace made of 15 gold beads shaped like olive pips or seeds and 15 smaller gold beads (photo 3). Graves of this type are relatively rare on the island and only attested at Knossos, Archanes and Chania. The 10th campaign closes the second 5-year programme and attention will now go to site consolidation and publication, before returning for a final campaign of soundings. 

For the original photo files, please email us for more information.

Photos:

1. Aerial photo of the Court Centred Building of the Neopalatial period ; remains of Early Minoan IIA village to the north-west (©EBSA, N. Kress)

2. Cist tomb with skeleton of an adult woman, Late Minoan II-IIIA1 (©EBSA, J. Driessen)

3. Necklace of gold beads found around the neck of the woman in the cist tomb of Late Minoan II-IIIA1 (©EBSA, M. Anastasiadou)

Activities in Belgium

Greek Archaeology Seminar ULB 2019

The Seminar of Greek Archaeology at the Université Libre des Bruxelles (ULB) is exciting and of the higher level as every year. This year's topic focuses on "Economis des matériaus en Grèce antique. Extraction, transformation, transport, échange". One of the key-areas is Lavreotiki and especially Thorikos where the Belgian archaeological activity through the EBSA is almost 55 years old.
 
The seminars are taking place every week at Université libre de Bruxelles, Campus du Solbosch | CP 133/01 
50 av. F.D. Roosevelt | 1050 Bruxelles

Discussing the... Minoans: Le Monde and RTBF

EBSA's putting forward one of the many aspects of its specialization: Minoan Crete. Our director, Prof. Jan Driessen, discussed "Europe's first civilization" both in "Le Monde" and answered questions live from Cyprus for La Première of the RTBF.
 
1) Le Monde
The Minoan civilization under the spots of "Le Monde" and the Belgian teams of the EBSA are among the most important.
 
https://www.lemonde.fr/sciences/article/2019/04/08/les-mysteres-de-la-civilisation-minoenne-se-dissipent_5447481_1650684.html
 
https://www.lemonde.fr/sciences/article/2019/04/08/la-langue-des-minoens-reste-une-enigme_5447472_1650684.html
 
2) La Première (RTBF)
If you want to know everything about Minoan languages and society organisation in 10 minutes by one of the top specialists, follow the interview by our director Jan Driessen on Belgian Radio (RTBF) in French. Interview given from Pyla, Cyprus where another Belgian team is excavating!
 
https://www.rtbf.be/auvio/detail_soir-premiere?id=2483237&cid=2483210&fbclid=IwAR2Mt3p2iOlW3EJpfN_oyUcgXKaFSQBpaNWTFbBZn9bE0URc9AuH4FTkO9Y