CAIRO – 5 August 2021: The Polish mission working in excavations in the vicinity of the ancient Egyptian port of Marea, near the city of Alexandria, announced the discovery of buried ruins of a free-standing urban complex that was built during the Coptic era in Egypt, and part of the Byzantine Empire during the sixth century AD.
Via the ancient-origins website, the Polish mission explained that this distinctly unique urban settlement was designed to be a separate entity within the boundaries of the port of Marea, founded by the Greeks after Alexander the Great's conquest of Egypt in 332 BC.
Archaeologist and study co-author Dr. Marius Guaizda said: “We have revolutionized our understanding of this ancient city in recent years. All thanks to the use of non-invasive and geophysical methods along with excavations, as during the Greek period (332 BC - 30 BC) and early Roman (30 BC - AD 313), heavy building activity took place throughout Egypt. Few new buildings were built during the late Roman Byzantine period, when many settlements had already been established.”
The urban complex was built in the latter half of the 6th century, and the designers chose the site of an ancient Roman wine-producing plantation, which allowed them to remain within the city limits of Marea. An unusual Byzantine settlement covered an area of about 32 acres.