GUIDE TO THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE OF ANCIENT THERA
The entrance to the archaeological site of Ancient Thera is from the northwest. We will be moving in a southeasterly direction. Within the site, apart from the buildings that belong to the Archaic, Hellenistic and Roman periods, we will be looking at the ruins of three churches. The first of these lies to the left of the entrance. This was an Early Christian basilica of the 4th/5th century, dedicated to the Archangel Michael. A Byzantine chapel of St Stephen was erected on the ruins of this basilica at a later elate.
Continuing our tour, we come to a building on our right which is called the Stratonas or Governor’s Palace. It stands at the highest point in the city, and a stepped road that starts at the main street leads right to its main entrance. The Palace consists of a series of rooms, which on three of the four sides border on a square courtyard.
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A short distance south of the Stratonas is what has been named the Gymnasium of the Guard because of its layout. This again has a large square courtyard, on the east side of which are two rooms.
Following the main street, we come to a point where it becomes wider. We have reached the Agora, the most important public space in Ancient Thera (and any ancient city). It lies practically in I he centre of the town and is divided by the main street into a north and south section. On the east side, and at a lower level, stretches one of the two residential neighbourhoods, while on the west l here were temples and other public buildings. To I lie east there is an unrestricted view of the sea. The agora is 111 metres long, and its width varies Ironi 17 to 30 metres.
Northwest of the North Agora, on our right, we come to three Roman exedras or platforms and immediately afterwards the small Temple of Reliefs of a dolphin symbolising Poseidon, and of Anemidorus of Perge. who founded the Temenos that beat’s his name in honour of Zeus, Poseidon and.. I polio