Puslapio vaizdai

other, and the Greek government inspector, who was there to watch our excavations in the interest of the Government; and, packed like herrings, we proceeded to a very jovial meal. It was the 22d of February, and we at once informed our guests that it was Washington's Birthday. We made a series of after dinner speeches, in which we enumerated the causes we had for being justly proud, ending by recalling the motto of our republic, which we had lived up to in being the only people who could ever boast of having united at their board those distinguished and noble gentlemen—the mayor and the anti-mayor. It looked as if fortune were really smiling upon us, for the rain and snow which for some days had prevented Mr. Fossum from continuing his work at the theater gave way to bright sunshine on the next morning, and we at once continued our work there with an increased staff of workmen.

On my previous visit I had decided upon beginning excavations on a site about half an hour's walk from the walls of Eretria toward Batheia, because of a fragment of beautifully worked marble molding which I had seen there, and of the traces of a marble wall immediately below the surface. It looked as if somebody else had made a tentative excavation on this spot some years before, as in the whole neighborhood, which is filled with ancient graves, the inhabitants for a long time past have been carrying on their secret digging, and value very highly the sites likely to contain ancient graves. I was informed by our friend the prospective mayor that this property belonged to his kinsman the late mayor, and another part to one of his brothers, who lived at Corfu. The part possessor had promised to communicate at once with his brother, and to obtain for me permission to dig on his ground. But I now found to my disappointment that the distant brother had not yet communicated his assent. While discussing the possibility of beginning excavations at this spot, I was informed that one half of the ground upon which I meant to excavate really belonged to one of the workmen engaged at our excavation at the theater, who willingly undertook to accompany us thither, and to


join the party of workmen to be employed there. I also persuaded the previous mayor to take the responsibility upon himself as regarded his brother, since he and his brother would be the gainers, inasmuch as by law the Government would have to compensate him to half the value of the objects which we found, and which would be housed in their museums. At the theater we had thirty-two men at work, with wheelbarrows, baskets, and two carts. Our friend the would-be mayor also urged me to begin work on some of his property, where he had every reason to believe there were a number of ancient graves. I readily came to a private agreement with him, and decided also to dig on this spot. It was here that we discovered, besides numerous objects of smaller interest and value, the beautiful gold ear-rings in the shape of doves, which are, to my knowledge, the finest specimens of ancient jewelry, and also beautiful specimens of the slender white vases, with graceful figures in outline and color, commonly known as Attic lekythoi.

On Tuesday, February 24, accompanied by Professor Richardson, I began excavating at the site with the marble molding. We followed up and laid bare a beautifully worked marble wall built of the best Greek masonry, with evenly worked blocks, each about a me


ter and a half long, and below the exquisitely worked molding two further layers of marble blocks, all of the same dimensions, resting upon two layers of well-worked calcareous stone called poros. The whole formed a foundation for a structure which is no longer extant, the foundation being two and a half meters high. But this wall continued for thir


ing. He then informed us that it did not belong to him, but to his wife, and that his wife had not given her consent. This information served to alter the tone of the dispute, and I attempted to turn the whole into a jest. But he only grew more obstinate. The comic element reached its height when, pick in hand, he sat down upon one of the blocks, which we then hoped might be the cover of a tomb, and said that it was his grave, and that nobody should open it. It was now time for us to show indignation; and I informed him that by taking part in the work there, and receiving our pay, he had given his consent beyond all doubt, and dig there we would; and I requested him to go back to the town and to bring his wife, saying that I would arrange the matter with her. Amid the jeers of the workmen he left in great wrath, and we at once proceeded with all haste to remove the block, to find-another one. And when the mutinous workman returned, looking rather sheepish, and saw that we had not come upon a grave, he was very anxious to continue his work; but he was dismissed, at least for that day. In the evening we had reached the fourth layer of these blocks, which appeared to be the last, and then our expert grave-digger drove his crowbar down into the earth, and, upon examining what adhered to the point, pronounced it virgin soil. And so we again decided to give it up. It now appears to me not impossible that the workmen were in sympathy with the owner of the land, if not conspiring with him, and I certainly believe that they would have continued the excavations after we had left, during the night.



teen meters only, and then returned at right an-
gles at each end, the sides being only a meter
and a half in length. On the inner side this
marble structure was backed by large blocks
of poros, and in the inner angles we came
upon, and had with much labor to break up
and remove, two layers of such blocks super-
imposed at right angles one upon the other.
We were much puzzled as to what this build-
ing could have been. Temple or house it cer-
tainly was not. It might have been a portico
facing the sacred road which ran along its front;
but this was unlikely. After two days' work
our skilled grave-digger assured us that it could
not be a grave, and, discouraged by evening,
and having many other sites that were wait-
ing our examination, we followed the advice
of the experts, and stopped work. But in
the night I was kept awake by the thought
of what this curious structure might have
been; and remembering the aphorisms al-
ready quoted, again set to work there the next
morning, digging in the interior and breaking
up the huge blocks of poros which impeded
our progress downward.

Again I was kept awake puzzling over this curious structure, and by morning I had decided to lay bare and to see with my own eyes how the virgin soil within this wall looked, and to clear the place, if it took a fortnight of futile labor. On this Saturday the weather looked threatening. It was very cold and dark. The faithful and skilled Morakis, a hardy Spartan, now had charge of the workmen, and it was he who throughout sided with me in maintaining that it was a grave. I increased the staff, and we began to dig with energy at the southwest end of the inclosure. At three o'clock in the afternoon we came upon some blocks of poros which lay at a different angle to those which we had removed above them, and soon we saw clear before us a rectangular space formed of three huge blocks, the customary shape of one of those stone coffins which are let deep down into the ground. There were two huge blocks

Here began a new difficulty. At one moment it did appear as if it was a grave, and then our workman who owned this half of the site refused to allow to dig any further. There was much wrangling and shout

seven feet long joined together at each end by smaller ones three feet long, and covered with two or three well-cut stones. It had now begun to snow, and the sky looked black. I shall never forget the moment when the men raised the huge covering slabs, and from the stone coffin there gleamed through the earth, which had fallen in, the shimmer of gold, while the tops of vases just peeped out at head and foot.

The excitement was intense. Morakis danced and shouted; and in less than an hour the mayor and the anti-mayor, and a large number of both parties, with coats and cloaks and umbrellas, came tramping out to where we were digging. They were very much in our way, and it was hard for us to move about. But great was the excitement when, carefully working on with knife and finger, one gold leaf after another was extracted, to about 150 in number, which filled a large square handkerchief-leaves of all shapes, and of pure solid gold. And when at last the signet-ring of the ancient noble Greek who was here interred, upon which was a rampant lion with a star above his head and at his feet a thunderbolt, was pulled out of the earth, where there were some bones of the fingers, there was a shout of wonder, and each wanted to see and handle what was at once put in security by the officer in charge. In spite of the snow and the cold wind, which grew thicker and intenser that night, we had a merry supper; for at the theater and the other graves it had also been a lucky day, with many interesting finds.


with moisture, seated on our camp-beds, capes and ulsters and shawls could not make us feel really warm. So we sat the entire Sunday, each endeavoring to deceive the others and himself into good spirits. But it continued to snow all day, and it snowed and rained all night. This was unheard of in Greece, and we felt confident that in the morning the southern sun would soon melt away the snow and allow us to begin work anew. It will easily be understood how eager we were to continue our work at the tombs; for it was now evident that the marble inclosure was one of the many family graves, and that there must be several other stone coffins within it; and being the finest structure of the kind within the whole neighborhood of Eretria, and within the experience of any of our grave-diggers, we felt convinced that it must be the grave of some distinguished family, which might tell us a story of surpassing interest.

But Monday morning it continued to snow, and by the afternoon there was a foot and a half of snow lying on the ground. By even


Though in the interior of Greece, in the mountains of Boeotia and Thessaly, there are severe winters and much snow, I have never on the sea-coast and at Athens seen snow lie for more than a few hours, and I therefore confidently hoped that by the next day, Sunday, the weather would improve. It was not only for the digging that we looked forward to such a change, but because of the extreme discomfort we endured in our houses. It was impossible to go out, as the roads were full of slush, with large pools and clinging mud, and we were huddled together, four in one small room and two in another (Mr. Pickard of Dartmouth College, and Mr. Gilbert of Brown University, both members of the School, had also joined our party, and were busily engaged in surveying the district). With a smoking fire which gave no warmth, with no glass in our windows to keep out the cold winds and the damp, with walls clammy

ing our impatience almost reached despair. But surely the next day would bring us sunshine, and we could at all events begin work in the afternoon. But the next morning again brought snow and rain. The rain, it is true, melted some of the snow, but the winds were cold, and there seemed no hope. My impatience gained the mastery over me. I called Professor Richardson, and begged him to tell the students that, as they were all full-grown men, it was for them to consider their health, for which I could take no responsibility; but that I could wait no longer, and was determined to dig with my own hands, and that whosoever would join of his own free will was welcome. Professor Richardson started at once to call the students, but at the door he turned back and, picking a line from Schiller's "Wallenstein" out of his wonderful memory, cried gaily:

Nacht muss es sein wenn Waldstein's Sterne


(Night must it be when Waldstein's stars are shining.)


them before they gave up their muddy contents. But we toiled on until we reached another tomb immediately beside the one which had contained all the gold. Morakis, when he gave himself a moment's rest, would burst out in wonderment, and would exhort the other workmen to take note how these gentlemen could work. It was really comical, with the curious clothes they had on, to see the form of the learned Professor Richardson picking away vigorously; while another spectacled student filled the baskets which were handed from one to another. But the work, at all events, kept us warm. When, however, we got down five or six feet, to the narrow compass of the grave, we could not all be occupied at once, and then it was hard work to keep warm. Yet our greatest fear was the advancing night. When, toward dusk, we had succeeded in lifting up two of the covering stones, we found that there was at least two hours' work remaining before we could clear out the grave itself, and begin the delicate work of freeing the objects it might contain from the surrounding soil without breaking. On the other hand, we could not possibly leave the grave open at that stage, as it was likely that others would do what we had left undone, and that we never should see the treasures which we hoped it might contain. And thus, chilled to the marrow, at about six o'clock, as there was no more work for them to do, most of our party returned to Eretria, leaving three men to finish the work by lantern-light.



"Don't mock either the great Bohemian or me," I said; "this is serious." But the spirit was contagious. All the students came and enthusiastically offered to go out and dig. All our workmen refused to stir except three led by the faithful Morakis. Our cook prepared a famous breakfast, and, wrapped up in whatever clothing we had, with red blankets from the beds, the canvas bags in which the beds were packed, and with picks and shovels and baskets, we all trotted off through the village in the rain, singing American college songs. The shutters opened, and the people looked out at the crazy foreigners, for mad they certainly thought us. We waded through the mud, and reached the tomb; and now began some really hard work. The picks stuck in the wet earth, which was as heavy as lead, and each lift of the spade as we threw soil into the baskets was an athletic feat. And then we had to pass these baskets full of black, heavy, muddy earth from hand to hand, and to wrestle with

Crouching within the hole, we watched with bated breath while Morakis was cautiously peeling away the earth from the inside of the stone coffin. One of the blocks of the covering stones had been broken, and when, after a few small fragments of gold had led us to expect a find similar to the one we had made in the first grave, no object of value or interest was forthcoming, the doubt crossed our mind whether this tomb had not been rifled in antiquity. The crime of robbing a grave was, in

the days of ancient Greece, severely punished. After nearly three hours' work, the grave was thoroughly examined and found to contain naught of interest.

But the next day was indeed a bright day, and one which was to compensate us in every respect for our previous hardships.

I remembered that in these family inclosures the principal graves are not in the center, but at the angles. Accordingly this morning we began to dig at the other angle, and at the end of the day we had come upon another sarcophagus.

This grave was evidently the earliest and most important one, and the one for which the inclosure had been built; for a portion of it was immediately under the wall of the inclosure itself, and accordingly in the person here buried we should expect to find the man for whom all this structure had been built. Soon again there was the glimmer of gold; and carefully clearing away the earth, I began to pull at the portion that became visible, which at once appeared to me thicker and more solid than a leaf, expecting, however, to find a leaf similar to the one that filled the grave we first found. But the leaf would not give, and so I had to cut away the earth further in, and still further, until at last I was able to extract a broad diadem, or fillet, of pure gold, such as was worn round the brow. We now pushed on with renewed eagerness and caution, and there came another broader band of gold with repoussé pattern, and then still another, and another, until we found six; and finally, reaching the point where the head lay, and where a small fragment of the skull was still preserved, there came another, a seventh band of gold, with leaves like a wreath attached to it, which crowned the person here interred. There were several smaller vases and bronzes, and a knife; and then came two styli. Now, with these two complete styli and fragments of a third, we also found a metal pen shaped very much like our own, the only specimen hitherto found in Greece proper, though there have been found boxes which contained these pens, and inkstands. It was now evident that the person here interred, for whom the inclosure was made, was not only a man of great distinction, but a man of letters.

We had found several interesting terra-cotta figures of mythological or ideal character in this grave, but at the head we finally discovered a terra-cotta, distinctly a portrait, of the style of portrait-statue well known from the fourth century B. C., of a man draped in his cloak, with both hands folded at the side. Now, this attitude corresponds to the description we have by a certain Christodoros of the statue of Aristotle which he saw at Constantinople. On VOL. XLIV.-56–57.

the next day we disclosed the grave next to this one toward the interior, built at a different angle, and, from the various stones that were used in its structure, distinctly of a later date. At the foot of this grave, carefully placed on the center of a large slab which had before served some architectural purpose, was a smaller marble slab upon which in clear-cut letters was the inscription [B]IOTH [A]PIETOTEAOY (Biote Aristotelou), namely, Biote, the daughter of Aristotle. The only male name which we found connected with the tombs, and referring to the family which had made this inclosure its last resting-place, was the name of Aristotle.

The facts will speak for themselves. In 323 B. C., Aristotle, a man of considerable wealth, the tutor and friend of Alexander the Great, was compelled to fly from Athens and to take refuge at Chalcis, where he certainly had property, and whence either the family of his father or mother sprang. In the following year he died at Chalcis, not, as some biographical account has it, by drowning in the Euripus, or by his own hand, but of a complaint of the stomach. Nor can we give cre dence to the late and untrustworthy tradition which tells us that his remains were subsequently taken to his native town of Stagira. From the nature of his will it is evident that at this time his chief property and home were at Chalcis and not at Stagira. Here at Eretria, which we know to have been a seat of philosophy, the fields of which join those of Chalcis, and which, as we have evidence to show, was a special place for burial, we find this tomb, undoubtedly that of a distinguished family; we find the chief grave within this family inclosure to contain the remains of a very distinguished man, as is evident from the gold crowns laid there, probably by his friends and admirers, at his funeral; we find this distinguished man to be a man of letters, as is evident from the styli and the pen; and we find within the family inclosure the name of Aristotle. For the present I will not lay too much stress upon the correspondence between the terra-cotta statuette and the description of the statue of Aristotle, nor will I dwell at length upon all the evidence which has since come to me. They confirm still further the attribution made so probable by the discoverers themselves. The treatment of this subject requires the critical sifting of so many passages and special points of archeology and scholarship, that I must leave this to be dealt with in the official report of the School of Athens. But I must say now that some of the doubts I have on a previous occasion expressed have become weakened. These chief doubts were based upon the fact that Chalcis, where Aristotle died, and Eretria, where this

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