Human skull, bones found in historic church in Turkey's west

Human skull, bones found in historic church in Turkey's west

MUĞLA – Anadolu Agency
Human skull, bones found in historic church in Turkeys west

AA photo

Excavations in the garden of a 19th-century Greek church in the western province of Muğla’s Datça district have unearthed a grave, human skull and pieces of bone. 

The church, situated in the Hızırşah neighborhood six kilometers from the district center, has undergone recent restoration as part of a project backed by Datça Municipality. 

Restoration experts working on the rear façade of the historical church recently found the grave and human bones, informing the Marmaris Museum Directorate of their discovery. 

Officials from the museum began examining the grave and other artifacts, with expectations that an expert team from the Culture and Tourism Ministry will open the grave and begin closer inspections. The grave is believed to date back to the Byzantine era. 

The church, which was abandoned after the population exchange between Greece and Turkey starting in 1924, passed into the municipality’s hands in 1970. It served for many years as a storage to keep historical artifacts that were unearthed during archaeological excavations. 

Lying in ruins due to neglect, the church will be converted into a cultural center after the restoration project, hosting exhibitions as well as cultural events. 

As the district does not have a museum to display the archaeological artifacts unearthed from the ancient city of Knidos, the church will also bridge this gap, according to officials.