Scientists may have discovered the lost temple of Poseidon
Percy Jackson Paging. Years of history have hidden a temple in the Peloponnese region of southern Greece. Archaeologists are excavating and studying it now, and it may not be just any old ancient shrine. It may be a long-lost temple to Poseidon, the mythological god of the sea.
The Greek historian and geographer Strabo, who lived 2,000 years ago, wrote of a notable shrine to Poseidon in the area where researchers found the temple. In a statement on Wednesday, the University of Mainz in Germany said a team of researchers “unearthed the remains of an ancient temple-like structure located at the site of the Sanctuary of Poseidon which was most likely dedicated to the divinity itself”.
The structure is located in a coastal area that once housed an ancient settlement. Scientists have studied its history of sea level and coastal changes, finding a history of multiple tsunamis over a long period of time. Traces of the structure were first discovered in late 2021. Excavation work revealed the hidden temple.
“The location of this discovered sacred site matches the details provided by Strabo in his writings,” said archaeologist Birgitta Eder of the Austrian Archaeological Institute.
The area’s history of extreme waves can be linked to its importance as a place of worship. “It seems possible that this location was explicitly selected for the site of the Temple of Poseidon due to these extreme events,” the University of Mainz said. “After all, Poseidon, with his cult title of Earthshaker, was believed by the ancients to be responsible for earthquakes and tsunamis.”
Confirming that the Sanctuary is the Lost Temple of Poseidon might take some time. Researchers undertook a multi-year survey of the structure, which is about 31 feet (9.4 meters) wide. At least one intriguing object has already been found: part of a marble perirrhanterion, a ritual water basin.
We’ll have to stay tuned to see what else is revealed as work continues on the site.