Lycian Sarcophagus

Photo Information
Shot in Kas (Kash). This Lycian sarcophagus is located in the centre of the town.

Lycian sarcophagi are distinctive - especially for their great size. These sarcophagi usually consist of three parts: a base, a grave-chamber and a crested 'Gothic' (pointed) lid. In some sarcophagi deceased slaves and dependents were held in a hyposorion under the main grave-chamber. Lycian sarcophagi are often decorated with reliefs, usually on the sides and crest of the lid, but sometimes on the grave-chamber. Most of the intact Lycian sarcophagi belong to the Roman Age. These are generally smaller and simpler than those preceding them, though still with a crest and rounded lid. Some, however, have gable-shaped lids with acroteria at the lower corners (many of these can be seen at Sidyma). Most Lycian sarcophagi are free-standing, open to the sky, but others are placed inside of monumental tombs. The Lycians' had a large ancestor cult and so tombs were very well-cared for. Veneration for ancestors, amounting even to ancestor worship, was almost universal in the ancient world. A few tombs have inscriptions which reveal that most tombs were prepared while their owners were living. At Olympus there are two tombs which carry letter-oracles where the response was conceived as given by the ancestor.
In general, much care was given to protect the tombs from damage or misuse. Inscriptions on the tombs commonly end with a curse or the price of a fine should the tomb be violated, it is believed that looting and other disruption of tombs must have been widespread. Athena, or Malija in the Lycian language, was the goddess responsible for punishing the violaters of tombs. Leto was worshiped partly as the guardian of the tomb.
15/11/2011 - 20:09nonur
CategoryBlack & White
Shutter Speed1/25
Focal Length18mm


Link Posted 15/11/2011 - 20:24
Thank you for the interesting explanation, Nezih. The figure at the side gives the scale of the sarcophagus.
Nicely done in B&W.


Link Posted 15/11/2011 - 20:29
That certainly is an impressive tomb and you given some good background information about the subject.
I like the dark background and the inclusion of the cat.
Friendly Regards


Link Posted 15/11/2011 - 20:55
The dark background certainly makes it stand out, thank you too for the information really interesting, great scale in the photo. Cheers Patricia


Link Posted 15/11/2011 - 22:00
Thank you for picture and the very interesting and detailed description Nezih - fascinating!


Nicola's Apartments, Kassiopi, Corfu

Some cameras, some lenses, some bits 'n' bobs


Link Posted 16/11/2011 - 11:31



Link Posted 16/11/2011 - 17:09
Nice shot of a nice object that is as interesting as the story what was shared by you.
My website
My PPG site


Link Posted 16/11/2011 - 17:12
Thank you all folks for your supportive kind appreciation!
Add a Comment
You must be registered or logged-in to comment.