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+90 212 252 41 19 Istiklal Caddesi 247, Tünel – Beyoglu, ISTANBUL P.K. 125 Beyoglu, TR-344 33 ISTANBUL

Since the foundation of the SRII, the Swedish excavations at Labraunda has been a central point of its focus. Excavations commenced in [year] and the SRII published the findings from [year] to [year].

Labraunda is the home of the Sanctuary of Zeus Labraundos and is located 14 km from the modern town of Milas, in southwestern Turkey. This area was known in ancient times as Karia (or Caria), and the Sanctuary of Zeus Labraundos, with the double axe as his symbol, was a national sanctuary for the ancient Karians.  The origin of the cult of the god of the double axe goes back to the worship of Tarhunt, the Hittite god of Heaven.

The earliest evidence for the cult of Zeus Labraundos at the site dates to the middle of the 7th century BC. Most of the monumental marble buildings however were erected by the Hekatomnid family of Karian satraps in the 4th century BC. The famous Maussollos is among these. From the Roman period there are two large bath buildings. Early Christianity is represented on the site by two Byzantine churches as well as a baptistery.

Descriptions of the individual buildings found on the site are provided here. These include not only the temple, the andrones, the many stoas and the Roman baths but also the ancient remains in the immediate surroundings of the sanctuary, such as the spring-houses, the tombs, the Sacred Road, the Acropolis fortification and the five free-standing fortresses.

Since [year] the Labraunda excavations underlie the French [name] institute, but Swedish scholars affiliated to the SRII still participate in the excavations on a regular basis and their publications remain a core part of the institute’s academic output.


Head of project: Doc. Dr. Olivier Henry


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