Ancient statue found

A 2,000-year-old marble statue of a goddess has been discovered among dozens of broken columns and inscriptions during excavation at an ancient theater in central Greece, archaeologists said yesterday. The headless statue of the hunting goddess Artemis dates from the middle of the first century BC, archaeologist Athanassios Tziafalias said. The statue, standing 82 centimeters (32 inches) tall, was found on July 4, during work on the fringe of the ancient theater at Larissa, a town some 360 kilometers (225 miles) north of Athens. The figure, dressed in a short tunic and a deerskin, lacks its arms and lower legs. Archaeologists also found about 60 limestone and marble sections of columns from the theater, together with more than 100 inscribed stones expected to shed light on the town’s history, Tziafalias said. But hopes are high that more significant finds could be among the fragments. «There are many marble pieces wedged among the columns, which have not yet been investigated,» a Culture Ministry press release said. Built in the 3rd century BC, the building was destroyed by an earthquake two centuries later. It was rebuilt by the Romans. (AP)