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Gitani

The ruins of Gitani are located 1.5 km away from the dam in an area of unique natural beauty on the southwest slope of Vrissela mountain. The city was built in the end of 4th century on the north side of the river which for centuries was the natural boarder separating Thesprotians from north hostile tribes. It is built at Kalpakiotikou junction in Kalamas and has a powerful natural fortification as it is surrounded by water almost from all the sides, giving an impression of an island. From this advantageous location it was controlling the exit of the navigable at that time river to the sea. It was the political center of the Priory of Thesprotians and capital city of Thesprotia from its establishment up to its occupation from the Romans (167 B.C.), reached it heyday during the Hellenistic period. Polygonal walls of 2.400 m length surround an area of 280.000 m2, while only the smooth south part of the city that extends over 180.000 m2 is densely structured. Inside the walls you can see ruins of 4 – 6 m wide roads and the lower part of ancient buildings' walls. Excavations have revealed an Ionic porch in the area of the market, a small temple, private houses and public buildings one of which has three androns (a room where male drinking parties called symposia were held in the ancient Greek house) decorated with mosaic floors - identified as the “Pritanio”. The rather luxurious lifestyle of the city residents, a little before its destruction in the 2nd century B.C. probably in 167 B.C. by the Romans, is obvious from the quality of the constructions of public buildings that have been excavated, as well as from the luxury of their mobile findings. The theater, which could seat 4-5.000 viewers and where the scientists discovered part of a stone cavetto with sills in the area between the walls and the river that was protected by a protective barrier, apart from the theatrical performances and cultural events organized there was also used as a place for the Priory’s meeting where representatives of all Thesprotian tribes took part.
Reference : Prefectural Administration of Thesprotia

 

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