Excavation of a 13th-Century Church near Vasilitsi, Southern Messenia

by Nikos D. Kontogiannis, with an appendix by Lilian Karali

Hesperia, Volume 77, Issue 3
Page(s): 497-537
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40205759
Year: 2008


A small-scale excavation in the area of Vasilitsi, southern Messenia, revealed the remnants of a previously unrecorded 13th-century triple-aisled cross-vaulted church with a series of burials along its north wall. In addition to ceramics and a marble basin, a small hoard of Venetian torneselli was found. The author discusses the church's period of use and details of its architecture and construction, as well as the identity of its builders and the settlement pattern of this largely unknown area. Parallels from published histories, surface surveys, and excavations from other regions of medieval Messenia and Greece are discussed. An osteological report on the burials is presented as an appendix.