English Français
Help preserve sites now!

Archaeological Site of Aigai (modern name Vergina)

Archaeological Site of Aigai (modern name Vergina)

The city of Aigai, the ancient first capital of the Kingdom of Macedonia, was discovered in the 19th century near Vergina, in northern Greece. The most important remains are the monumental palace, lavishly decorated with mosaics and painted stuccoes, and the burial ground with more than 300 tumuli, some of which date from the 11th century B.C. One of the royal tombs in the Great Tumulus is identified as that of Philip II, who conquered all the Greek cities, paving the way for his son Alexander and the expansion of the Hellenistic world.

Site archéologique d'Aigai (nom moderne Vergina)

À proximité de Vergina, dans le nord de la Grèce, fut découvert au XIXe siècle l'ancienne Aigai, première capitale du royaume de Macédoine. Les plus importants vestiges sont le palais monumental à la somptueuse décoration de mosaïques et stucs peints et la nécropole renfermant plus de trois cents tumulus dont certains remontent au XIe siècle av. J.-C. Parmi les tombes royales qu'abrite le Grand Tumulus figurerait celle de Philippe II qui conquit l'ensemble des cités grecques, ouvrant la voie à son fils Alexandre et à l'expansion du monde hellénistique.

موقع فرجينا الأثري

اكتُشفت أيغاي العاصمة الأولى لمملكة مقدونيا الواقعة على مقربة من فرجينا في شمال اليونان في القرن التاسع عشر، ومن أهمّ آثارها القصر الهائل، المزيّن بالفسيفساء والجص الملوّن تزييناً فخماً، والمقبرة الكبيرة التي تضمّ أكثر من ثلاثمائة جثوة يعود بعضها إلى القرن الحادي عشر قبل الميلاد. ومن بين المقابر الملكية التي تضمّها الجثوة الكبرى مقبرة الملك فيليب الثاني الذي غزا مجمل المُدن اليونانية، فاسحاً المجال لابنه الإسكندر ولفتح العالم الإغريقي القديم.

source: UNESCO/ERI

韦尔吉纳的考古遗址

艾加伊城(Aigai)是马其顿王国古代的第一个首都,发现于19世纪,靠近希腊北部的韦尔吉纳。其中最重要的遗迹是一个用马赛克和灰泥装饰的巨大宫殿,以及包括300多个坟墓的墓地,其中一些坟墓建于公元前11世纪。大古墓中的一个皇家墓穴已经确认属于菲利普二世。这位国王曾征服所有希腊城市,为他的儿子亚历山大以及希腊世界的扩张铺平了道路。

source: UNESCO/ERI

Археологические памятники Вергины

Город Эги являлся первой столицей древней Македонии. Он был обнаружен около Вергины в северной Греции в ХIХ в. Наиболее значимыми находками стали монументальный дворец, богато украшенный мозаиками и росписями по штукатурке, а также участок захоронений с более чем 300 погребальными камерами – «тумули», некоторые из которых датируются ХI в. до н.э. Одно из царских захоронений, которое находится в большой погребальной камере, идентифицировано как принадлежащее Филиппу II, захватившему все древнегреческие города и создавшему тем самым своему сыну Александру Македонскому основу для внешней экспансии и основания эллинистического мира.

source: UNESCO/ERI

Sitio arqueológico de Aigai

Cerca de Vergina, al norte de Grecia, se descubrieron el siglo XIX los vestigios de la ciudad de Aigai, primera capital del reino de Macedonia. Los más importantes son los del monumental palacio real, profusamente ornamentado con mosaicos y estucos pintados, y los de la necrópolis, que cuenta con más de 300 túmulos, algunos de los cuales datan del siglo XI a.C. Una de las sepulturas reales del Gran Túmulo sería la de Filipo II, que con su conquista de todas las ciudades griegas preparó a la expansión del mundo helénico llevada a cabo por su hijo Alejandro.

source: UNESCO/ERI

エゲの古代遺跡(現在名ヴェルギナ)

source: NFUAJ

Archeologische stad Aigai (moderne naam: Vergina)

De stad Aigai, de oude eerste hoofdstad van het Koninkrijk van Macedonië, werd in de 19e eeuw ontdekt nabij Vergina, in het noorden van Griekenland. Tot de belangrijkste overblijfselen behoort het monumentale paleis, rijkelijk versierd met mozaïeken en beschilderd pleisterwerk. Daarnaast is er een begraafplaats met meer dan 300 grafheuvels, waarvan sommige dateren uit de 11e eeuw voor Christus. Een van de koninklijke graven in de Grote Tumulus wordt geïdentificeerd als het graf van Philippus II, die alle Griekse steden veroverde. Hij maakte de weg vrij voor zijn zoon Alexander en de uitbreiding van de Hellenistische wereld.

Source: unesco.nl

  • English
  • French
  • Arabic
  • Chinese
  • Russian
  • Spanish
  • Japanese
  • Dutch
Archaeological Site of Aigai (modern name Vergina)
Justification for Inscription

The Committee decided to inscribe the nominated property on the basis of cultural criteria (i) and (iii) considering that the site is of outstanding universal value representing an exceptional testimony to a significant development in European civilization, at the transition from classical city-state to the imperial structure of the Hellenistic and Roman periods. This is vividly demonstrated in particular by the remarkable series of royal tombs and their rich contents. The Committee decided to add to the proposed criteria cultural criterion (i), since the paintings found at Vergina are of extraordinarily high quality and historical importance.

Long Description

Vergina represents exceptional testimony to a significant development in European civilization, at the transition from the classical city-state to the imperial structure of the Hellenistic and Roman periods. This is vividly demonstrated in particular by the remarkable series of royal tombs and their rich contents. The paintings found at Vergina are of extraordinarily high quality and historical importance.

The ancient city in the northern foothills of the Pierian range is the capital of the kingdom of Lower Macedonia, Aigai, traditionally founded by Perdiccas I when the Macedonians of the Argive spread northwards over the plain of Emathia. This region was already settled in the early Bronze Age (3rd millennium BC), as evidenced by a tumulus (grave-mound) near the river Haliakmon. The wealth and density of over 300 grave-mounds in the Cemetery of the Tumuli testifies to the importance of Aigai in the early Iron Age (1100-700 BC). As the capital of the Macedonian kingdom and site of the royal court, Aigai was the most important urban centre in the region throughout the archaic period (800-500 BC) and the following century. The grave-goods in a series of tombs dating from the 6th and 5th centuries BC demonstrate commercial and cultural links with Greek centres of eastern lonia and the south. At the end of the 5th century, Archelaus brought to his court artists, poets and philosophers from all over the Greek world.

Although the administrative centre was transferred to Pella in the 4th century BC, Aigai retained its role as the sacred city of the Macedonian kingdom, the site of the traditional cult centres, and the royal tombs. It was here in 336 BC that Philip II was assassinated in the theatre and Alexander the Great was proclaimed king. The bitter struggles between the heirs of Alexander, the Diadochoi, in the 3rd century adversely affected the city, and it was further slighted after the overthrow of the Macedonian kingdom by the Romans in 168 BC. Nevertheless, it was rebuilt and survived into early imperial times. However, between the 2nd and 5th centuries AD the population progressively moved down from the foothills of the Pierian range to the plain, so that all that remained was a small settlement whose name, Palatitsia (palace), alone indicated its former importance.

The most important building so far discovered is the monumental palace, located on a plateau directly below the acropolis. This building, which rose to two and perhaps three storeys, is centred on a large open courtyard flanked by stone Doric colonnades. The rooms were used for religious, administrative, and political functions. On the north side was a large gallery that commanded the stage of the neighbouring theatre and the whole Macedonian plain. It was sumptuously decorated, with mosaic floors, painted plastered walls, and fine relief tiles. The theatre, from the second half of the 4th century BC, forms an integral part of the palace complex. Just to the north there is a sanctuary of the goddess Eukleia, with small 4th and 3rd centuries BC temples containing statue bases inscribed with the names of members of the Macedonian royal family.

The best known feature of the site is the necropolis, which extends for over 3 km, with the Cemetery of the Tumuli at its heart. This contains over 300 grave-mounds, some as early as the 11th century BC. To the north-west of the ancient city there is an important group of tombs from the 6th and 5th centuries BC belonging to members of the Macedonian dynasty and their courts. These contained rich funerary deposits, along with imported materials. One from around 340 BC with an imposing marble throne, is believed to be that of Euridike, mother of Philip II. The most impressive funerary monument is the Great Tumulus, an artificial mound 110 m in diameter and 13 m high, beneath which four elaborate royal tombs were discovered. One contains wall paintings representing the rape of Persephone, believed to be the work of the famous painter Nikomachos. Two of the tombs were undisturbed in antiquity and both contained rich grave-goods. In Tomb II the body was found in a solid gold casket weighing some 11 kg; the occupant has been identified as Philip II, father of Alexander the Great and consolidator of Macedonian power. This tomb is especially noteworthy for the frieze that adorns it, believed to be the work of the celebrated Philoxenos of Eretria.

Source: UNESCO/CLT/WHC
Historical Description

The ancient city in the northern foothills of the Pierian range has been identified with certainty as the capital of the kingdom of Lower Macedonia, Aigai According to tradition it was founded by Perdiccas I when the Macedonians of the Argive spread northwards over the plain of Emathia. This region was already settled in the Early Bronze Age (3rd millennium BC), as evidenced by a tumulus (grave-mound) near the river Haliakmon. The wealth and density of over three hundred grave-mounds in the cemetery of the Tumuli testifies to the importance of Aigai in the Early Iron Age (1100-700 BC). The quality of the grave-goods shows that this was a period of highly developed culture and technological skills in the community.

As the capital of the Argive Macedonian kingdom and site of the royal court, Algal was the most important urban centre in the region throughout the Archaic Period <800-500 BO and the century that followed. The grave-goods in a series of tombs dating from the 6th and 5th centuries BC demonstrate commercial and cultural links with the Greek centres of eastern Ionia and the south, such as Athens, Samos, and Corinth, and illustrate the wealth and sophistication of the royal court. At the end of the 5th century Archelaus brought to his court artists, poets, and philosophers from all over the Greek world: it was, for example, at Algal that Euripides wrote and presented his last tragedies.

Although the administrative centre was transferred to Pella in the 4th century BC, Algal retained its role as the sacred city of the Macedonian kingdom, the site of the traditional cult centres and the royal tombs. lt was during the marriage here in 336 BC of Alexander, King of Epirus, to Princess Cleopatra that Philip II was assassinated in the theatre and Alexander the Great was proclaimed king.

The bitter struggles between the heirs of Alexander, the Diadochoi, in the 3rd century adversely affected the city, and it was further slighted after the overthrow of the Macedonian kingdom by the Romans in 168 BC. Nevertheless, it was rebuilt and survived into early Imperial times. However, between the 2nd and 5th centuries AD the population progressively moved down from the foothills of the Pierian range to the plain, so that all that remained was a small settlement whose name, Palatitsia ("Palace"), alone indicated its former importance.

 

Source: Advisory Body Evaluation