|Cody Brooks |||Aug 13, 2014 12:13 AM EDT|
(Photo : REUTERS) Many important ancient ruins can be found in the Mediterranean region, such as Pompeii.
A massive tomb possibly belonging to Alexander the Great was found in Greece, officials announced Tuesday.
The dig site has been in excavation since 2012 but the tomb itself was discovered recently, MSN reports. The site lies in Amphipolis, a municipality roughly 65 miles from Greece's second biggest city, Thessaloniki.
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Site workers uncovered 13 steps leading down to a walled path of masonry, ending at a closed archway with statues of two sphinxes, headless and wingless from decay.
NBC reports that the area is heavily guarded by police due to the tomb's possibility of being the grave of Hellenistic-era conquerer Alexander the Great.
Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras said the tomb dates to the same period, from 325-300 B.C.E; Alexander died in 323 B.C.E.
In addition, even though Alexander died in Babylon - about 50 miles from Baghdad in modern-day Iraq - his tomb has not been found so far.
Other sites within Greece have been found to contain important figures from the same period such as Alexander's father Philip II. The latter's tomb was discovered in Vergina in 1977, about 100 miles from the new dig site.
The intricacy of what they have found, especially the frescoes on the masonry walls and the marble outer wall skirting the tomb, suggests to archaeologists at the site that it is at least the grave of a senior official during the Hellenistic period.
The burial mound is about 1,600 feet long and was constructed with marble from the nearby island of Thassos, the BBC reports. The article continues to say that suggestions have been made that the tomb was made by Dinocrates, a friend of Alexander the Great.
Alexander the Great's empire spanned from southern Europe to beyond Egypt at its height, with plans to invade India and keep moving until they had found the end of the continent.
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