Burial chambers found in heart of Diyarbakır

Burial chambers found in heart of Diyarbakır

Burial chambers found in heart of Diyarbakır

In archaeological excavations carried out in Amida Mound, described as the “heart of Diyarbakır” in the historical Sur district in Turkey’s southeast, Roman-era burial chambers have been unearthed.

Excavations continue under the direction of Professor İrfan Yıldız, a member of the Dicle University Faculty of Education, in Amida Höyük, which once hosted many civilizations including Hurri-Mitannis, Urartians, Persians, Romans, Umayyads, Abbasids, Marwanids, Seljuks and Artukids.

Speaking to the state-run Anadolu Agency, Yıldız said that their team was working with a limited number of people due to the new type of coronavirus, and that various findings were revealed in the excavations.

Reminding that the water channels and the heating system, which are believed to be 1,800 years old, were found during the excavations, Yıldız said, “During the works this year, it became clear that the Artuklu Palace was built on the Roman Palace. During the Artukid period, some of the Roman palaces were used as they were and some of the places were rebuilt. In one of these spaces, the burial chamber was found at a depth of one and a half meters from the ground. The burial chamber with stone coffin is from the Roman period and is about 1,700 years old. The rulers who served here probably were buried in the burial chamber under the palace.”

Yıldız stated that as the works continue, stone graves can be found again and that the tombs found will be preserved at the site.

“We can say that in the Pagan period of Rome, that is in the 3rd century A.D., which we call the Late Roman period, these burial chambers were built under the palace and the rulers of this place were buried in these burial chambers. Until now, three tombs have been unearthed in Room 2 and it contains bones and skeletons. In Room 5, five graves were found,” he said, adding that as the work continues, more remains will be found in the burial chambers under the Roman palace. Yıldız stated that most of the bones will be preserved on site, but they have taken samples for anthropologists to study and sent for analysis, and that the stone graves will be preserved.

He stated that in case of increased support, much more interesting data will be reached in Amida Mound Artuklu Palace and the area will be opened to tourism as soon as possible.