22 February 2018

The Gymnasium of Eretria

A groundbreaking discovery

Fragments of two arms belonging to a marble statue larger than life-size were discovered during the recent excavations of the Gymnasium of Eretria. The statue probably represents a Roman general.

The arms of the marble statue after restoration

Fragment of the marble statue in situ

The discovery of the ancient Gymnasium

Discovered at the end of the 19th century and partially excavated by the American School of Classical Studies at Athens, the gymnasium was the center of social and intellectual life in the Hellenistic city. The restoration of the building in 2013–2014 by the Greek Archaeological Service (with European funding) led to the completely unexpected discovery of a second complex, with an identical floor plan, adjoining the gymnasium. From 2015 to 2017, the ESAG explored the newly discovered building. For a more thorough understanding of the institution of the gymnasium in Eretria, the School will reinvestigate in 2018 a third palaestra, that is located near the harbor.

Eretria, the ancient Gymnasium (drone view 2017)