And it so happened that some time ago I went to rest and spent two whole weeks on the Black Sea coast, in a place where there were just enough people to revive the landscape, but not more. And … there are still such places on the Black Sea coast of the Caucasus, although literally 20 kilometers from this place, in the same Anapa, there are so many people that … "Well, it's just awful." Here, however, a matter of taste, and someone, perhaps, even likes this lively crowd on the beach and continuous streams of people on the streets. But, of course, I could not help but visit this city, because I have been "following" the development of this resort town since 1969, when in the dining room under the tent in the center of the city one could still find … sandwiches with black caviar, but at all in the corners there were barrels with Riesling: just a Riesling 6 kopecks a glass, chilled - 10! And so, walking somehow in the center of the city, even then I discovered there strange pits lined with wild stone, and all this was covered by a high fence. But for a boy of 14 years old, what kind of fence is a barrier? So I then quickly and skillfully forced it, looked at the ruins of the ancient city that had opened up to me for a long time and with surprise, and even walked along its streets.
The story about the bows and arrows of ancient Gorgippia will be based on photographs, because it is better to see once than to read a hundred. In the Archaeological Museum of Anapa, a large number of gravestone steles are exhibited. And on all of them we see practically the same plot - a man in Greek clothing (the inscriptions on them say that these are Greeks), but with a bow and arrows in the fire of a clearly Scythian pattern.
Many years have passed since then, but every time I visit Anapa just passing through, I definitely go to these excavations and … I see that every year they look not older, but younger, that is, time goes in the opposite direction there. The building of the museum is also expanding, and the number of finds is becoming more and more. Well, this time I was not deceived either - the museum met me with a modern design of the exposition, no worse than abroad, but the remains of city houses, as before, pleased with their good appearance and … their layout, which remained unchanged from those distant days.
And this is what the Anapa city beach looks like today. Anyone else, but I personally do not like such an abundance of people. Moreover, it is unlikely that all these citizens go to go to dry closets …
Well, we can say that in relation to the monuments of ancient ancient culture, we are quite lucky, because there are a lot of ancient cities - Greek colonies on the territory of the Russian Federation. There are many interesting finds. And it is not surprising, because the same Gorgippia existed for about ten centuries. Before Gorgippia, people also lived here (the place is very convenient), belonging to the Sindi tribe, and therefore the place was called the Sindi harbor.
Such wells were in many houses of ancient Gorgippia.
And this is how the excavations themselves look, and it is a pity that they, in general, are so small in size.
The Greeks came later, built not one, but many cities - the same city-states as those that they left in their homeland, but which later, namely in the IV century. BC, united into one state - the Bosporan kingdom. Well, the Sindskaya harbor was renamed in honor of the brother of the king Gorgippus, who was appointed governor here. The city became so successful that it even had the right to mint its own coin - the silver drachma, and for this it was necessary to have not only silver, but also the corresponding income.
To our great regret, all that remains of the then Gorgippia today occupies an area of only about two hectares, on which the remains of the foundations of ancient quarters dating back to the II-III centuries were excavated. AD, a pavement running between them, wells, a winery, the remains of fortifications, as well as columns, sarcophagi and numerous marble tombstones. Most of the city is hidden under the foundations of modern Anapa, and to get to it, you need to tear it down to the ground, which, of course, is impossible.
A piece of wall with an inscription.
And here is her translation.
So archaeologists have to be content with excavations at the sites of laying multi-storey buildings and laying communications, and, most likely, the most interesting finds are still in the ground and lie (this is once again to the question of massive fakes of ancient artifacts) and are unlikely to ever be mined …
In the main room of the museum: everything is very modern and clear.
However, in any case, Gorgippia, like other Greek cities, was not too large - it is believed that its area did not exceed 38 hectares (0.38 km. Sq.), And its main street was only about eight meters wide. It walked parallel to the coast and came close to the city gates, and then further it was an ordinary trampled dirt road. But the streets in the city were cobbled. At first they were paved with cobblestones and fragments of broken earthenware, and then, in the 1st-3rd centuries. AD, the pavement was laid out with huge flat stones placed on layers of clay and rubble. And this coating turned out to be so strong that even the dump trucks that transported the earth from the excavations on it did not cause any harm to it!
Well, just a bed. They lay on it and … ate!
Of course, by our standards, people in this city lived quite primitively. But … they did not shy away from amenities at all, although they lived quite simply, and even to know. The houses of the nobility in the city center were low, no more than two stories high, and usually consisted of three or four rooms. At the same time, the first floor was occupied by shops and workshops, and the living rooms were upstairs. But each house had an impressive basement, where amphorae with wine, grain and olive oil were kept.
Laginos 1st century AD
The city had a water supply system and a storm sewer, discovered during excavations and consisting of canals that ran along the streets and settling wells, in which the water was cleaned of garbage and only after that it was discharged into the sea. We also found here fish cages, where live fish were kept, premises with pressure platforms in which wine was made, and in them - containers of about 6 tons; kilns for firing ceramic products; and even traces of metallurgical production.
Typical house of a resident of Gorgippia. It was heated with braziers with coals (they were found), a wooden staircase went to the basement, and clay containers for supplies were kept there.
Again, during construction in the 70s of the last century, a unique monument of ancient culture was found in Anapa - a painted tomb called the "Crypt of Hercules". It was located in rocky ground a meter above the earth's surface, the walls and ceiling were built of stone blocks. True, the tomb was robbed, but unique wall frescoes depicting all 12 exploits of Hercules and sarcophagi were preserved in it, which the ancient thieves simply could not take away. However, even the then omniscient thieves did not get to all burials. After all, next to the "Tomb of Hercules" archaeologists have found another tomb with two sarcophagi, which remained not robbed. In the first of the sarcophagi, a man was buried, and in the second, two girls. Moreover, the gold jewelry and other decorative burial objects found in both sarcophagi speak of their high social status.
A piece of painting from the "Crypt of Hercules". Pay attention to the characteristic image of a bow in his equipment.
In Gorgippia, many brooches were found - brooches that fasten the cloaks of the townspeople. Interestingly, of the 120 found brooches from the Roman period, five belong to provincial Roman specimens, one enameled from Gaul, the rest of local production. That is, the trade ties of that time were very close. After all, where is Gaul, and where is Gorgippia. Signet rings are also quite interesting. Spectral analysis revealed that they were brought to the Bosporus and Gorgippia from … Egypt, but they were used as personal signs, with the imprints of such rings fastened documents written on papyrus and parchment.
Here they are - ancient brooches, rings, buckles, bracelets. People of that time loved to decorate themselves. In this they have not changed.
Historical evidence of the death of the city has not been preserved. At first he was in the II century. AD came under the rule of Rome, and then the city was destroyed in a fire sometime after 238. First, the Goths came here, then the Huns, so there was simply no way for the civilized townspeople to live in these places!
Akinaki and cheekpieces are finds indicating that the inhabitants of the city had to fight a lot. Moreover, to fight not in the infantry, but in the cavalry.
Akinak and metal belt.
And here is a whole arsenal, and on the same scale.
However, it must be said that we know a lot more about Gorgippia than about many cities of antiquity, first of all, because the historian Pausanias in his "Description of Hellas" in the 11th book described it in detail and, most importantly, this is his description relating to the II century. AD, has survived to this day. In it, Pausanias writes that even a Greek who arrived from Egypt (Why from Egypt? Yes, because the main flow of grain came from there at that time, it was the granary of Rome.), This city would have made an impression.
However, they not only fought, but also traded. For example, hydria - a ceramic vessel for water, most likely, was made in Attica in the 3rd century. BC.
He reports that the main street of the city runs in it from west to east and runs along the sea, from the western city gate to the agora. The street, in his opinion, was wide, not less than 18 cubits (one cubit - 40-50 cm), and all covered with huge stone slabs, up to three cubits long, and, moreover, completely new. They lay on a thick layer of bedding and tamping (everything is as the excavations showed!), And in some places under them old pavements are visible. Under the slabs of the new pavements, there are gutters that are connected to drainage wells … That is, he did not come up with this, and everyone found it!
To the north of the main street, also along the coast, there is another 8-9 cubits wide. And both of these streets are crossed by transverse streets that are 10-16 cubits wide, so that the city is divided by them into regular squares, each has a side of 100 cubits. The walls of houses facing the streets have at least 20 cubits. The roofs of the houses are tiled. At the same time, Pausanias adds that some of the tiles were clearly brought from Sinop, that is, from a Greek colony on the Black Sea coast of modern Turkey).
We see the same bed and the scene of the feast on the funeral stele.
In the courtyard of every house there is either a well or a plastered cistern for collecting rainwater that flows there from the roof of the house. The house itself has a huge (!) Basement with a stone staircase (and yes, these are the basements that have survived the best).
From the courtyards to the outside there are channels of gutters, neatly made of processed stone slabs with a gutter. The courtyards are paved with either stone slabs or sea pebbles, in the rooms they are earthen with clay coating, and the walls are plastered and mostly painted, which speaks of the artistic taste of the then Gorgippians.
“… The houses built by the Romans are distinguished by their large size and thickness of the walls and, as a rule, contain thermae. One building of the Roman barracks is located in the center of the city, another at the eastern gate …"
“… During my stay in Gorgippia, I saw the construction of new temples. The theater was also rebuilt, now it was adjusted to the simple tastes of the Romans, which means that it had to be suitable for conducting gladiatorial battles. At the entrance to the agora, the courthouse and the gymnasium are open. From the statues, my attention was drawn to the huge statue of Athena, patroness of Hercules. As they explained to me, this is the work of Gipatodorus, performed by him for the 102nd Olympic Games and bought from the megalopians by Mithridates specifically for his border city of Gorgipia …"
"… In the same place I saw a stele, where for 300 years the names of young men who have won the annual running competitions dedicated to the beloved god and patron saint of the Gorgippians - Hermes have been carved …"
Here it is - this stele! Well, he just asks for stamps, coins, postcards … the emblem of our new "Hermes Games", organized with a truly Russian scale and hospitality! And each winner, in addition to a medal, also a copy of a vessel from Gorgippia, filled with local honey and a wooden barrel with kvass! It's time for him to squeeze Coca-Cola …
Here's how! It turns out that on the lands of our modern Russian Federation for at least 300 years ancient sports competitions were held, somewhat similar to the Olympic Games, and … why don't we revive them? However, the museum told me that such games had already been held in Anapa, and athletes from Greece and Cyprus came to them. Now we can only talk about this initiative not sinking into oblivion, and these competitions would gain strength and popularity from year to year. Well, since they were dedicated to the god Hermes, the patron saint of trade, then they must be given under the patronage of trade corporations, and … this is also a good way to make money on advertising! Everything, you know, rests on money, because in order to get it, you must first invest smartly with it, and, of course, correct PR - well, how can we go without it ?!
It is significant that, judging by the images on the tombstones, the bows of the inhabitants of Gorgippia were small in size and were always worn on the left.
One of the slabs depicts a horse archer above and horses below. Apparently, horse breeding was an important branch of the economy of the ancient Gorgippians, and could it have been otherwise then. After all, they lived surrounded by nomads.
And after all, not warriors are depicted on all the steles. They don't wear armor, but they all have bows. Obviously, the bow for the city dwellers was something like a modern pistol. Once you got on a horse, how can you go without a bow? Even if you just went to your country house!
In conclusion, I cannot but say that before, when I came to Anapa, I always went to the so-called High Coast and looked from its cliff to the sea. After all, this cliff was there, and when in the sea in front of it you could see Greek ships sailing to the harbor of Gorgippia, life was in full swing here, even if it was “very own”, and where is that “time machine” to see it all with your own eyes ?
Fastening the bowstring to the bow. Judging by the images, the bows of the Gorgippians were small in size, which means that they were complex bows, similar to the bows of the Scythians. And, therefore, they either knew how to make them on their own, or the Scythians sold them to them.
The arrowheads found during excavations are all very similar and … very small. About the size of a 5, 45 mm bullet. Socketed, they are made of bronze (casting), and have three sharpened ribs with a reverse point, so that it was impossible to pull out such a tip. Judging by their size, their shafts were thin and not heavy, most likely made of reed. At close range, it was a truly terrible and, moreover, not burdensome weapon!