Greece finds ‘Neko’, a noblewoman buried in her jewelry 1,800 years ago

The grave of an ancient noble woman that was discovered inside a burial memorial of the Roman era on the island of Sikinos, Greece, July 19, 2018. Picture taken July 19, 2018. (Reuters)
Updated 24 July 2018

Greece finds ‘Neko’, a noblewoman buried in her jewelry 1,800 years ago

  • Her name, according to a burial inscription, was Neko — or Νεικώ using the Greek alphabet
  • The box-shaped grave was found untouched in the vault of the Episkopi monument

ATHENS: Greek archaeologists have discovered a virtually intact grave of an ancient noblewoman buried with her golden jewelry at a Roman burial monument in the island of Sikinos.
Her name, according to a burial inscription, was Neko — or Νεικώ using the Greek alphabet.
The box-shaped grave was found untouched in the vault of the Episkopi monument, a rare burial memorial of the Roman era, which was later turned into a Byzantine church and a monastery.
Golden wristbands, rings, a long golden necklace, a female figure carved cameo buckle, glass and metal vases and fragments of the dead woman’s clothes were found in the grave.
The well-preserved mausoleum on the tiny island, in the Cycladic group southeast of Athens, was likely to have been constructed to shelter the grave, archaeologists said.
“We were unexpectedly lucky,” Director of the Ephorate of Antiquities of Cyclades Dimitris Athanassoulis told Reuters on Monday. “This is Neko’s mausoleum.”
“It’s very rare. A monument, one of the Aegean’s most impressive, has got an identity. We now have the person for whom the building was built, we have her remains, her name.”
Despite attacks by grave robbers in ancient times and the building’s various uses through the centuries, Neko’s grave was found intact mainly because it was well hidden in a blind spot between two walls at the basement of the building, Athanassoulis said.
He said that experts thought Neko had links to the island but it was not clear whether she was actually from Sikinos.
“We are now trying to find out more about her,” he said. “We are still at the beginning.”


What We Are Reading Today: Saving America’s Cities by Lizabeth Cohen

Updated 15 October 2019

What We Are Reading Today: Saving America’s Cities by Lizabeth Cohen

  • Saving America’s Cities is a dramatic story of heartbreak and destruction but also of human idealism and resourcefulness

Saving America’s Cities is a thoroughly researched biography/history of Ed Logue, a prominent leader in urban renewal and redevelopment.

In Saving America’s Cities, the prizewinning historian Lizabeth Cohen follows the career of Logue, whose shifting approach to the urban crisis tracked the changing balance between government-funded public programs and private interests that would culminate in the neoliberal rush to privatize efforts to solve entrenched social problems. 

A review published in goodreads.com said Logue’s era of urban renewal “has a complicated legacy: Neighborhoods were demolished and residents dislocated, but there were also genuine successes and progressive goals. Saving America’s Cities is a dramatic story of heartbreak and destruction but also of human idealism and resourcefulness.” 

The review said that the book “is a good contrast for those who have read Robert Caro’s The Power Broker, his highly engaging and Pulitzer Prize winning biography of Robert Moses, sometimes called ‘the master builder’ of New York.”