Byzantine-Era Pottery Kilns Revealed During Works in Kozani

The National Herald Archive

(Photo by ANA)

Two well-preserved kilns of the Byzantine era were discovered in the area Gratsani in Kozani, northern Greece, during works for the construction of a sub-station at the West Askio wind farm. The archaeologists that made the discovery believe that the kilns, along with the ancient warehouses found on the site, belong to a Byzantine-era pottery workshop.

According the head of the Kozani Antiquities Ephorate Areti Hondrogianni, "one of the two kilns is in a very good condition, with an area of 10 square metres and a rack that has almost 200 apertures and is supported on 10 arched pillars." The archaeologists observed that all the apertures in the kilns were very carefully blocked with stones and tiles, while both its entrances were sealed. They came to the conclusion that the owners had temporarily closed the workshop with the prospect of using it again in the future. The workshop appears to belong to a nearby settlement that has not yet surfaced, on which there is no further information.

The archaeologist responsible for the excavation, Sofia Eleftheriadou, told the Athens-Macedonian News Agency that "the two kilns are the first unearthed in the region of Kozani and constitute a very important find, not only for the dating but also because their firing rack is solid, something that is rarely preserved throughout the years."

A few kilometres away, the works for the transfer of electricity from the wind farm revealed a 30 square metre building that dates back to the Bronze Age (1600-1100 BC). The building appears to be similar with other buildings of the same era that have been unearthed in the regions of Florina and Kastoria. Next to the building was a grave, probably belonging to a woman.

Hondrogianni said that the Ephorate is in close cooperation with the company responsible for the wind farm's construction in order for "a closed roof to be constructed, at the company's expense, not only to protect but also to make the site accessible to visitors."