National

2000 years old city conquered by Alexander the Great discovered in Swat

Barikot Ghundai Ruins, Sawat

WRITTEN BY

4 minutes read

A 2000 years old city conquered by Alexander the great is discovered in Swat valley located in northern Pakistan. The wrecks of Bazira, also called Vajirasthana, are near the town of Barikot, where the Italian Archaeological Mission has been excavating since 1978. Carvings and Sculptures dating back more than 2 centuries have been discovered in the ancient city of Bazira in the Swat valley. The sculptures reveal the religious life of the city, telling stories from Buddhism to many other old religions.

Bazira was first buildup as a small town, during the 2nd century B.C., and in the course of time developed into a city situated within the Kushan Empire. The Kushan Empire fall during the 3rd century A.D., at the same time a series of earthquakes demolished Bazira. The damage caused by the earthquakes and the financial situation brought about by the fall of the Kushan Empire. Bazira gradually fell into wreck, with the city deserted by the end of the 3rd century.

Over the past decades archaeologists have excavated Bazira city to reveal shrines and palatial quarters. It is considered as a valuable center to study the art of Greco-Buddhist. Bazira is specified in ancient history as having been put under attack and conquered by Alexander the Great by the end of the 4th Century BC. Up till now there had been no evidence of this old city. Archeologists had a rough idea that the city was of the Indo-Greek era of the King Menander who was the Greek King of Buddhist religion and has ruled almost two centuries after Alexander the Great and whose coins were found in the unearthing site.

The Italian Archaeological Mission renamed as ISMEO, established by Giuseppe Tucci in the Swat District in the year 1955 and has been unearthing in Barikot (the old Bazira city). Since 2011, the unearthing at Barikot is 12 hectares including the acropolis have focused on roughly one hectare in the south-western quadrant of the Barikot city.
During the last couple of weeks, an investigation of the materials administered with the assistance of the CIRCE group conducted by Filippo Terrasi, a Professor of Mathematics and Physics in Napoli 2 University who uncovered that the pre Indo-Greek city wreck can be dated with absolute assurance at the middle of 3rd Century BC, one century preceding the city walls, which implies amidst the Mauryan era. And that’s not all, the prehistoric town revealed by the trench foundation outside the city walls goes back to 1100-1000 BC.

The mission director, Luca M. Olivieri said

Today it has been revealed that the Indo-Greeks guarded a city that already existed and that, in order to build the city walls, they wrecked a large portion of the historiography and uncovered amazingly antiquated structures through developed and profound unearthing work. We all use to think that the city lies on simply a late prehistoric settlement. Today we realize that it was already a city and that the remains at the foot of the walls are 800 years old than we had initially thought.

This implies the city uncovers an astonishing series of occupation.