DESCRIPTION
THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE
INFORMATION
 
 
One of the oldest ancient Greek theatres is the famous theatre at Aiges, closely related to the political history of ancient Macedonia. At the centre of its orchestra was murdered in 336 BC King Philippe II on the day of his daughter's wedding, a fact signalling the rise to the throne of his son Alexander the Great. The theatre is located approximately 60m to the north of the palace's western wing; this leads to the conclusion that both buildings made part of a unified architectural plan and held a key role in the political and cultural city life, together with the agora and other public buildings. It is very likely that both main roads on the east and the west of the theatre were leading respectively to the palace and the temple of Eukleia with its votive monuments. Current evidence does not allow for accurate dating. Construction dates with certainty to the fourth century BC, eventually coinciding with the construction of the theatre of Dionysus in Athens.

The morphology of the ground was not ideal to build a theatre, but the position is privileged: northern orientation of the cavea gave marvellous views of the immense Macedonian plain. Excavation to date uncovered almost the entire first row, the rill, the walls of the parodoi (passageways, public entrances), the foundations of the scene and the thymeli stone. The cavea is divided into nine cunei. The first row, in form of a well aligned horse-shoe, is composed of large poros seats (excavation evidence), while the rest were probably of timber; only the corridors between tiers were strewn with small erratic stones. A 0.50m wide and 0.27m deep rill for the removal of rain water surrounded the orchestra, 28m in diameter, which is very large compared to other ancient theatres. At the orchestra centre was uncovered the stone which supported the thymeli, the altar of Dionysus; its coating probably covered visible irregularities on its surface. The parodoi differed in shape: to the west were uncovered the foundations of a 20m long retaining wall; to the east, the 14.60m long retaining stone wall followed the natural ground slope, while a vertical offset wall, 15.23m in length, retained the earth from the south to the north. The only surviving part of the scene are the east foundations, forming the letter (12.40 x 2.50m); the scenic building was probably simple with two closed wings and a central portico.

After its destruction in the second century BC, the theatre was definitively abandoned. It came to light in 1982 and excavations were carried out in 1983. It is currently being systematically researched and studied by its excavator, the professor Mrs. Stella Drougou.
 
 
 
Mythological / Historic Persons