Thassos

Limenas, Thassos

 

 


Coordinates: 40°41′N 24°39′E

 

Thasos or Thassos is a Greek island in the northern Aegean Sea, close to the coast of Thrace and the plain of the river Nestos but geographically part of Macedonia. It is the northernmost Greek island, and 12th largest by area. Thasos is also the name of the largest town of the island (also known as Limenas Thasou, “Harbour of Thasos”), situated at the northern side, opposite the mainland and about 10 kilometres (6 mi) from Keramoti.

Limenaria, Thasos in 1950'sLying close to the coast of Eastern Macedonia, Thasos was inhabited from the Palaeolithic period onwards, but the earliest settlement to have been explored in detail is that at Limenaria where Middle and Late Neolithic remains have been found that relate closely to those of the Drama Plain. In contrast, the remains of the Early Bronze Age on the island align it with the culture that developed in the Cyclades and Sporades to the south in the Aegean. At Skala Sotiros for example, a small settlement was encircled by a strongly built defensive wall. Even earlier activity is demonstrated by the presence of large pieces of ‘megalithic’ anthropomorphic stelai built into these walls, which, so far, have no parallels in the Aegean area.

Hemiobolus of Thasos: Wreathed head of a nymph left/Dolphin leaping left within incuse square,circa 411-340 BCThere is then a gap in the archaeological record until the end of the Bronze Age c 1100 BC, when the first burials took place at the large cemetery of Kastri in the interior of the island. Here built tombs covered with small mound of earth were typical until the end of the Iron Age. In the earliest tombs were a small number of locally imitated Mycenaean pottery vessels, but the majority of the hand-made pottery with incised decoration reflects connections eastwards with Thrace and beyond.

The island was colonized at an early date by Phoenicians, attracted probably by its gold mines; they founded a temple to the god Melqart, whom the Greeks identified as “Tyrian Heracles“, and whose cult was merged with Heracles in the course of the island’s Hellenization. The temple still existed in the time of Herodotus. An eponymous Thasos, son of Phoenix (or of Agenor, as Pausanias reported) was said to have been the leader of the Phoenicians, and to have given his name to the island.
Read more about the history of Thassos at Wikipedia’s website 

Mining activities for base and precious metals started in the 7th century B.C. with the Phoenicians, followed in the 4th century by the Greeks and then the Romans. The mining was both open – pit and underground, and concentrated on the numerous karst hosted calamine deposits for lead and silver although there was also minor exploitation of gold and copper. Worth mentioning is the discovery of a paleolithic addit located at Tzines iron mine, whose age has being estimated at approximately 15.000 years old, (Kovkouli et al. 1988) for the exploitation of limonitic ochre.

Pb-Zn mine of Koumaria in ThassosMore recently, mining companies such as Speidel (1905–1912) and Vielle Montagne (1925–1930) exploited the Zn-Pb (calamine) ores, which had reported grades over 12% Zn+Pb.
Since 1964 there has been no mining activity on the island.

 

Accommodation in Thassos:
• Hotels in Thassos
• Thassos Hotels Guide
• All accommodation on Thassos island
• Thassos Travel Guide

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Twitter
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Add to favorites

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *