Myrtis: Celebrated ancient Athenian on view in Delphi
There?s an added bonus if you?re visiting the renowned town of Delphi this summer. This is because Myrtis, the celebrated reconstruction of a 5th century BC young Athenian whose remains were unearthed during excavations back in the 1990s, is currently on display at the local archaeological museum.
?Myrtis: Face to Face with the Past? was originally developed thanks to donations by professor and orthodontist Manolis J Papagrigorakis and Athens University. The exhibition?s interdisciplinary character has earned much praise both locally and abroad. The Delphi show will remain on view until September 30.
The story of Myrtis takes the viewer back to 430 BC Athens, when a 11-year-old girl is believed to have died of the plague. Her remains were discovered in a mass grave along with those of another 150 people during a 1994-95 excavation in the area of Kerameikos at the time of the construction of the city?s metro. The remains of the 11-year-old, who archaeologists named Myrtis, were in excellent condition and this led to the reconstruction of her face in the form of a sculpture.
Meanwhile, a number of contemporary artworks related to the Myrtis exhibition are scheduled to go on display at the European Cultural Center of Delphi on August 1.
The Delphi show, organized with the support of the Fokida Chamber of Commerce, explores a dramatic chapter of ancient Greek history: the fall of democracy in Athens and the tragedy of the Peloponnesian War.
According to archaeologist Nancy Psalti, head of the Delphi-based 10th Ephorate of Prehistoric and Classical Antiquities, the exhibition will contribute to an increase in the number of visitors traveling to Delphi, while at the same time reinforcing local interest in ancient Greek culture and history.
The exhibition is also designed to cater to visitors with hearing and visual impairments and is accompanied by educational material.