Tomb of Archimedes in Syracuse

Tomb of Archimedes in Syracuse

Carlo Pelagalli - CC3.0


 Viale Teracati, 50A - Siracusa (SR)

Cavagrande Natural Reserve Guided Trek

Discover the Nature Reserve of Cavagrande on a guided trek. Enjoy a transfer from Syracuse and a stunning walk in a lush canyon past streaming waterfalls, and relax with a refreshing swim.

Neapolis Archaeological Park Entrance Ticket

Skip the lines with this entry ticket to the Neapolis Archaeological Park. Explore the many wonders of this fascinating archaeological site including the Greek theater and the Ear of Dionysius.

The Necropolis Grotticelle di Siracusa is a large Greek-Roman cemetery area, in which, according to tradition, the tomb of Archimedes is located.
The necropolis is located in the rocky area further north than at the Archaeological Park of Neapolis. The term "Grotticelle" derives from the transformation that took place into ancient Roman columbaria, that is a kind of Roman sepulcher built to contain the ashes of the cremates, which in the following epochs to the Roman one were used as dwellings.
The Grotticelle Necropolis has some first traces of burial dating back to the Sicilians of the Bronze Age , but its intensive use begins in the Greek period 5th century BC , and reaches its maximum splendor in the Hellenistic period, III ° century BC. It was later abandoned, only to be reused in Roman times, in the 1st century BC ..
It is entirely excavated in the living rock of the Latomia di Santa Venera . In fact, the Grotticelle Necropolis was also used as a latomia. As evidence of this are the stone blocks that are still visible today. Some excavations carried out have also brought to light a stretch of road dating back to the Greek period and some remains of wall structures that are thought to be traced back to the existence of a probable even older sacred building.
Traditionally, the famous Tomb of Archimedes is located in the necropolis. This tomb differs in its structure from the rest of the sepulchral area: the presence of a triangular tympanum placed at the top of the facade, which contains inside niches used to house cinerary urns.
According to an official historical version, the general Roman Marcello, saddened by the murder of Archimedes, ordered a funeral ceremony in his honor with a worthy burial. The general then had a tomb dedicated to Archimedes built, this majestic structure was surmounted by a stone plaque or column on which he had a sphere inscribed in a cylinder engraved with an epigraphic enunciation typical of his theorem, as the primary symbol of his discoveries.
In reality, the sepulcher which is still called Archimedes' Tomb today cannot have been such : it was dated to the 1st century BC. and the 1st century AD a period long after the death of Archimedes, in 212 BC .. There are also historical sources that describe the place where the tomb of Archimedes is located. In the Tusculanae disputationes by Marco Tullio Cicero the discovery of the tomb of Archimedes is described. The description, which dates back to 75 BC, does not correspond to the location where the alleged tomb stands. In Cicero's text, reference is made to an Agrigentine door which, according to scholars, must have been located in the current square of the Syracuse railway station.
We will therefore still have to wait to be able to admire the tomb of the greatest engineer and inventor of all. times.

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