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In the ground and under water of ancient Chersonesus
During two summer periods (1996-1997) Taras Shevchenko University and Crimean branch of Institute of Archaeology of National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine above and under-water archaeological expedition researched the famous Greek Black Sea colonization monument - antique Chersonesus. Ground archaeological research was conducted on the site of antique theater by the History Department students under the guidance of Hellen Parshyna.
The aim and task of the expedition:
- to complete research of the medieval layers that cover the antique theater ruins
- to facilitate the university students with archaeological practicum and to enable them to study in founds, archives and expositions of Chersonesus museum.
Ground archaeological excavations of antique theater site were continuation of the many years’ work of famous Crimean archaeologist of Crimea - Oleg Dombrovsky who discovered ancient theater ruins in 1954. According to researches of the past, the ancient theater ruins were covered with strong scurf of medieval cultural layer. During the past excavations two medіeval temples and several houses were discovered there.
The method of magnet research was utilized for excavations. The metaldetector “Spectrum XLT” which we used was granted to us by the White’s Electronic (UK) Ltd. With its help 46 antique and medieval coins, two lead seals, brass weights, a bead and a brass cross were discovered.
Underwater expedition researched coastal line of Chersonesus. Even small number of submergence proved the availability of this coast for underwater archaeological research and at the same time difficulty of its conduct in such a busy navigable area (the majority of archaeological material were at the navigating channel).
Archaeological material (small fragments of ceramics) were found along the entire researched area. It is represented by the main categories of ceramics characteristic for the local population and got into the sea by the coast erosion and by ground excavations dump pour out.
By the entrance into the Carantine bay on the waterway numerous rather large amphorae fragments were discovered. The character of founds and the place of its discovery is an evidence several shipwrecks at this place. We have accumulated the material from underwater, which consists of several types of amphorae of different times, mainly of antique and medieval period. Beside amphorae there were pithos and domestic and building ceramics fragments. All material was submitted into "Tavrian Chersonesus" cultural reserve founds.