Anastasian Wall Project 2000
The Anastasian Wall
The Southern Sector:
After preliminary investigations of the southern sector from Kurfalı to the coast in 1998 we were able in 2000 to carry out detailed investigations on a long stretch of the Wall line in this sector from Parpa Tepesi to the coast, a distance of some 3.5km. Along the whole of this section the Wall survives as little more than a subtle linear bank and ditch running across the open fields.
A complete linear survey of the Wall line was undertaken with some sections recorded as more detailed micro-topography (close contour). At the same time Timescape Archaeological Surveys carried out a magnetometer survey along the Wall line and in its immediate vicinity. A total of 2.3 hectares was surveyed with the magnetometer, with the Wall line, ditch and counterscarp appearing as distinctive features along with a significant number of other anomalies which will require further examination.
The earthwork of the Wall line can only be traced to within around 100m of the cliff edge at the south end. From the clifftop here it is however possible to observe the outline of a substantial stone platform extending some 160m into the sea from the sandy shore. We have identified this structure as the southern end of the Anastasian Wall. The massive scale of the masonry confirmed the antiquity of the structure, which at its most southern point lies some 5m below the high water level.
The Central Sector: Büyük Bedesten
Our clearance and survey of the Büyük Bedesten Wall Fort in 1998 (Crow and Ricci 1997, 251-3, fig. 9; Crow, Ricci et al. 1998, back cover) had focussed on the southern (inner) side of the Wall on the structure of the fort itself. Due to forestry clearance in 2000 we were able to extend this survey to the outer (north) side of the Wall. Here we discovered and surveyed a massive bank and ditch which enclosed a large area immediately outside Wall, forming an outer fortification (proteichisma) (Fig. 1). We investigated further areas of clearance to the south where we found the ditch preserved better then in any other area we had previously seen on the Wall. Here again the inner earthen bank and outer counterscarp were evident, showing that the proteichisma arrangement was not simply a special provision for the Büyük Bedesten enclosure, but that it was also a feature of the ditch system in general. In this area we surveyed a further 500m of Wall which included three towers.
The Water Supply System
Our hydrogeological team from La Sapienza University (Rome) led by Prof. Paolo Bono, continued their investigations of the spring sources and water channels in Thrace. In a number of excursions we visited sites in the vicinity of Vize, Kirklareli and Halkali, recording spring water discharge and chemical composition and collecting samples of channel sinter. We also discovered and investigated two previously unexplored aqueducts, one in the Civiz Dere north of the Büyük Bedesten and a second near Çiftlikköy in the Kayınlık Dere.
The Fildami reservoir
For the final three days of the project we conducted survey at the Fildami open-air reservoir near Bakırkoy. We produced a plan and elevation drawings of all the standing walls using a Reflectorless Total Station. A comprehensive photographic record was also produced and marked with control points which were then surveyed, thus providing us with an archive from which detailed elevation drawings of each façade can be produced using rectified photographic processing. GPS control points were also established and the structure was tied into our master survey grid of Thrace. A number of new observations were made through a close study of the structure, in particular regarding the organisation and function of the channel openings in the north and south walls. The piezometric tower in the east side was seen to have been fed by a single channel from the reservoir. It was a double-shell structure, with the outer casing of the tower separated from an internal spiral staircase by a space within which the water from the reservoir could flow. From within the tower it was possible to see outflow channels leading away from the reservoir in different directions. This structure could therefore serve to regulate the amount of water passing into the channels feeding different areas of the city.
Once again it is our pleasure to be able to record our thanks to the General Directorate of Ancient Monuments and Museums for granting permission to continue our research in 2000 and to the representatives of the Ministry of Culture Nilüfer Atakan and Cevdet Sevinç. Financial support for 2000 was gratefully received from the Leverhulme Trust, the Arts and Humanities Research Board, the British Institute of Archaeology at Ankara and the British Academy. The geophysical survey was co-ordinated by J. Alan Biggins of Timescape Archaeological Surveys, Northumberland. The team comprised students from Universities of Newcastle, Belfast, Aberdeen and La Sapienza (Rome) and we thank them for their enthusiasm and commitment: Tom Crow, Ed Davis, James George, Rowan Hindley, Claire Nesbitt and Mike Tabona (survey assistance), Laura Casella and Emiliano Agrillo (botanists).
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