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Culture Caves Eastern Macedonia and Thrace Prefecture of Rodopi Municipality of Sapes

The caves of Strymi are situated on a cliffside at the south of the village and consitute evidence of the existence of man in these parts since prehistoric times
(Photo: Pantsooglou Christos)

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28/11/2007
Cave of Strymi

Aikaterinh Balla
Source: C.E.T.I.
© Region of Eastern Macedonia and Thrace
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The caves found near the village of Nea Strymi on the northeastern foothills of Ismaros have two entrances and stand among high rocks at the southern side of the ravine of the “wild beasts” (In dere). In this area with the imposing rocks, there are many caves of several dimensions. According to the finds, now exhibited in the Komotini Archaeological Museum (i.e. stone weapons, items, etc), these caves were natural shelters and seem to have been inhabited from the Neolithic and Bronze Ages as well as the historic times.

In cave A, the northeastern entrance is descending, while the western entrance is nothing but a small opening. Two sections made in the cave’s interior revealed pottery from the Neolithic and Bronze Ages as well as pottery from Troy VIIb. Cave B stands in the same side of the ravine, to the west of cave A. It is smaller than the other caves and is entirely lighted by the opening of the entrance. Two sections made in its interior revealed prehistoric Thracian and Byzantine pottery sherds. In cave C, which stands at the northern side of the ravine, the surveys carried out in three sections did not reveal any pottery and the artificial fill was clear (0, 30-0, 50). On the hill above the cave, prehistoric and Thracian pottery sherds and wall remnants were found.
During the last decades, illicit trade of antiquities and gold rush in this specific area has impeded the stratigraphical research and has obstructed the progress of the archaeologists’ work. At present times, some of the caves are used by cattle-raisers who keep inside their flocks for protection.