TIME

Newly Discovered Tomb in Greece Largest Ever

The sepulcher appears to date from the reign of Alexander the Great

A team of archaeologists may have discovered a new tomb in Greece that is the burial site of a high profile individual during the reign of Alexander the Great.

The tomb, which dates to 300 BCE and sits under a burial mound near the ancient city of Amphipolis in Greece’s northern Macedonia region, appears to be the largest ever discovered in the country. Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras called the find “clearly extremely significant.”

“It is certain that we stand before an especially significant finding. The land of Macedonia continues to move and surprise us, revealing its unique treasures, which combine to form the unique mosaic of Greek history of which all Greeks are very proud,” Samaras said.

A five-yard wide road leads up to the tomb, atop which experts believe once sat a 16-foot tall lion sculpture previously discovered at the site. Carved sphinxes stood to either side of the entrance and the compound was encircled by a 500-yard marble wall. The tomb is believed to be that of a top general or close relative of Alexander the Great, the warrior king who ruled Macedonia and conquered a massive swath of the ancient world.

The possibility that the tomb is Alexander’s has been ruled out, as he is believed to have died in Babylon and been transported to Egypt for burial in 323 BCE.

Archaeologists have been excavating the tomb since 2012 and hope to know definitively who was buried there by the end of the month.

[The Telegraph]

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