Mt. Lykaion Excavation and Survey Project, Part 1: The Upper Sanctuary

by David Gilman Romano and Mary E. Voyatzis, with appendixes by Apostolos Sarris, George H. Davis, Susan M. Mentzer, Evi Margaritis, and Britt M. Starkovich

Hesperia, Volume 83, Issue 4
Page(s): 569-652
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.2972/hesperia.83.4.0569
Year: 2014


This is the first report on the excavation and survey project at the Peloponnesian Sanctuary of Zeus on Mt. Lykaion, Arcadia. During 2004 and 2005, topographical, architectural, geological, geophysical, and historical surveys were conducted. From 2006 to 2010, survey work continued, along with the excavation of the upper and lower levels of the sanctuary. This report focuses on the altar and temenos areas in the upper level of the site. Excavation of the ash altar revealed evidence of a Mycenaean mountaintop shrine, and yielded the largest assemblage of Mycenaean ceramics yet known from Arcadia. There are also signs of activity at the altar from the Final Neolithic, Early Helladic, and Middle Helladic periods. The votives and burned animal bones suggest continuity of cult from the Late Helladic through to the Late Classical period.