1900-year-old child footprints were found in Stratonikeia, the City of Immortal Loves

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In ongoing excavations in the ancient city of Stratonikeia, known as the City of Immortal Loves, 1900-year-old child footprints have been discovered.

Located 7 kilometers west of Yatağan District in Muğla Province, Stratonikeia is situated within the boundaries of Eskihisar Village.

The city is also known in the ancient period as the City of Gladiators.

In the first quarter of the 3rd century BC, King Seleucus I Nicator named the city after his wife, Stratonike.

The settlement, which began in the Late Bronze Age, extends through the Archaic, Classical, Hellenistic, Roman Empire, Byzantine, Ottoman, and Turkish Republic periods.

Stratonikeia Ancient City
Photo: AA

Excavations in Stratonikeia, which is on the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List, continue under the direction of Prof. Dr. Bilal Söğüt.

Prof. Dr. Bilal Söğüt reminded that in previous years they had unearthed the western street and a toilet for 92 people and said: “This year, we started working on the gym and sports sections, including the apodyterium at the entrance of the Roman bath located next to the western street and the frigidarium with pool. We excavated the frigidarium section.” We completed it.”

“We uncovered niches around the pools and other sections in the frigidarium section of the bath. We also found the grave of a person believed to have supported the bath inside the structure. We unearthed materials related to the construction of the current works in the 2nd century AD and the arrangements made in the bath in the same century.”

1900-year-old children's footprints were found in Stratonikeia, the City of Gladiators
Photo: AA

“Especially within the remnants from the Roman period, we came across footprints dating back 1900 years on the bricks used in the vaults. These findings were incredibly significant for us. In fact, we identified that these footprints belonged to three different children, approximately 2-3 years old.”

1900-year-old children's footprints were found in Stratonikeia, the City of Immortal Loves
Photo: AA

“Until now, in our previous excavations, we’ve discovered various depictions on roof tiles and wall bricks, but it’s the first time we’ve come across such a footprint. These footprints were coming from different directions and not all were in the same direction. This was another fascinating development for us.”

Cover Photo: AA

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