Date: June 2, 2007
Partners for the day: Elizabeth Stamoulis (text) Kyle Jazwa (pictures)
Sites: Thorikos, Lavrion Mining District, Sounion
Museums: Lavrion Museum
Principle Buildings/Monuments: Theater, retaining wall, mine, reconstruction of a washer, and a watch tower at Thorikos; Mine at Soureza; Sanctuary of Athena Sounias; Temple of Poseidon at Sounion
Time Spent on Sites: from ca. 8:00 AM to ca. 5:00 PM [9 hours]
Weather: Sunny and warm
Thank you for purchasing the DVD collection of the First Season of Survivor Extreme: Classics FSP in Greece. You are currently watching Episode 74, “Season Finale.” In the previous episode, our competitors spent the night mentally preparing for their last day in Greece. The competition was getting fierce, and each contestant could already feel the prize in their hands: a one-way ticket to New York City. Let’s check in with our host, Seth Pevnick.
“Today is the final day of our competition, and everyone is getting anxious. For the first round, we’ve divided the competitors into four tribes. Each will be taken to a remote location in the area of Lavrion, located about an hour outside of Athens. They will be assigned an archaeological site, at which thy will have to locate and identify several important landmarks. The two tribes that score the most points will move on to the final round. Let’s see what they came up with.”
Tribe 1 (Josh, Mike, Kelsey, Chris—Thorikos): Thorikos is one of the best excavated rural demes of ancient Athens. The harbor of Thorikos was fortified during the late part of the Peloponnesian War when the Spartans attacked the fort at Dekelia. We found a theater dating to the Archaic Period. It is unusual because, unlike most later Hellenistic theaters, it is not circular, but rather square. Near it are rectangular cuttings into the stone, which may have been for a storage building for the theater equipment. A retaining wall forms the back of theater, built around the 4th century BCE. We found a modern reconstruction of a washer that would have been used in conjunction with the mine, which dates to the 3rd century BCE. Water would have been circulated through the tanks with the finds from the mine, so that the ore would be separated from the unwanted rocks. Our tribe also found remains of a watch tower from the fortification walls.
Tribe 2 (Johann, Kyle, Pete— Lavrion Museum and Soureza): The Lavrion Museum was not supposed to be open to the public, but the curators let us go in for a few minutes to look around. They had a display explaining how the mines in the area worked, and exhibited the artifacts found there during the excavations. Early Christian mosaics found in the area were placed in the center of the museum in the floor. The most interesting pieces in the museum were the blocks from the frieze that went around the pronaos of the Temple of Poseidon at Sounion. They depict scenes of a centauromachy made out of Parian marble. When we went to Soureza we found the mines and we could see cisterns from the top of a mountain, but we could not find a way to the washer complexes, which are very well preserved at the site.
Tribe 3 (Kristina, Ray, Nick, Liz—Sanctuary of Athena Sounias): We could tell that the plan of this temple was unusual, because, instead of being rectangular, the temple looks more like a square. The East and South sides had an Ionic colonnade, and since the cella was not perfectly centered, the door was also not in the center. To the north is another, smaller temple. There is an altar in front of this smaller temple, which is off-axis and therefore may indicate that there was an earlier temple on the site that would have been on the same axis as the altar. Although we looked all over the site for more remains of the temple, it was hard to find. One of the locals said that he had heard that the entire temple had been moved to the Athenian Agora as one of the wandering temples.
Tribe 4 (Kinsey, Mike, Kelsey, Chris— Temple of Poseidon at Sounion): The fortifications around the site were built around the same time as those at Thorikos, about 413/412 BCE. Near the temple are a Propylaion and a stoa. The temple is built out of Agrileza marble, and it is almost identical in plan to three other temples, the Hephaisteion in Athens, the Temple to Ares in the Agora, and the temple to Nemesis from Rhamnous. They were all Doric peristyle temples with six columns on the short sides and thirteen on the long, and each column had only 16 flutes instead of 20. They also had continuous Ionic friezes lining the interior of the pronaos. This has led some scholars to suggest that the four temples were the work of a single architect. We were also able to find the inscription of Lord Byron’s name on one of the columns.
Seth Pevnick: Well, that was an exciting first round of our finale! Unfortunately, Tribe 2 had to be disqualified because they did not find the washer complexes. Tribe 3 was also disqualified because they could not find the wandering temple. This means that Tribes 1 and 4 will automatically make it to the final round. This will be a culmination of the entire trip, where they will have to present their Independent Study Projects to the rest of their competitors. Of the tribe that wins this round, only one member will be able to call themselves the FSP Champion. Let’s see how it turns out!”
Tribe 1 wowed the crowd with their presentations. Josh presented on the spread of Christianity in the Aegean, and Mike followed this with his study on the fortifications of the Copaic region. Kelsey went third, describing the relationship between Mycenaen art and similes in the Iliad. The team closed with Chris, who talked about changes in cavalry in the Classical period. Tribe 2 came back with a presentation on gorgons as the manifestation of earth goddesses by Kinsey. Brooks spoke about Minoan roadways, and Lizz came next with depictions in Geometric pottery of horses. They closed with a speech by Ben on Byzantine basilicas.
Seth considered carefully. He decided, “All of these presentations were truly exceptional. Since I cannot prove that one of your Independent Study Projects was better than the next, I will leave it for the group to decide who should win.”
The contestants looked around, carefully surveying each other. “Kelsey should win,” they decided, “for without the winning ticket she will never make it to her journalism internship for the summer in New York.” Kelsey thanked the group with her eyes tearing up, and the competitors looked around, realizing that this would be the last time they would all be together in Greece.
DVD SPECIAL FEATURES Cast Interviews We asked a few of our contestants to reminisce about their favorite moments from the entire competition. Here is a recap of some of the most popular choices: Riding donkeys in the rain up the mountain on SantoriniCelebrating May Day with the generous Spartans who gave us the delicious food from their barbequeVisiting the Turkish bath
Hiking Karphi on Crete
Visiting the cistern at Mycenae with the group of loud Greek children
Director’s Notes What If…?
Pete had never gotten the original mohawk?
None of the hotels in Greece or
Turkey had internet?
The twelve year-old Turkish boy had been able to buy Kelsey?
Kyle had sold Liz for Turkish tiles?
The Herakleion Museum had been open?
Kyle had found the Lost Tholos Tomb of Mykonos?
Kristina hadn’t been around to look after Johann and Gahl?
We hadn’t watched Eurovision 2007?
There weren’t any free days?
DVD Special Feature: Alternate Ending
Seth Pevnick addresses the tribes from behind the theater of Thorikos, “This is an individual challenge, for the title of Ultimate Survivor. There is a Mycenaean tholos tomb somewhere close by in Southern Attica. Find it and victory will be yours.” With the challenge set, everyone immediately broke off and went on his or her own way.
“A Mycenaean tholos tomb!” Kyle exclaims. “But, Professor Rutter told us we wouldn’t see any more of these. Gee willickers! I will immediately depart from the Archaic theater at Thorikos in search of this veritable architectural treasure.” The theater, by the way, is unlike Classical and Hellenistic theaters because the seats are not arranged in a semicircle around the orchestra.
Sly Seth Pevnick leads the alliance of Kristina Guild, Chris Blankenship and Johann Maradey to a circular stone building in the domestic quarter of Thorikos. Don’t be fooled, children. This is not a tholos tomb; these circular buildings have been found all over the countryside of Attica and were originally thought to be towers. The discovery of similar buildings in the middle of cities seems to disprove this belief. What were they? We only know that they aren’t tholos tombs.
The obligatory ‘natural’ pose in front of a museum case (Laurion Museum). No, Chris Blankenship and Kinsey Stewart, the tholos tomb is not in that display case.
When Kinsey Stewart realizes that the tomb isn’t in the museum, she returns to Thorikos to find it. “Ahhhhhh!” Kinsey yells, as she gets washed away down the channel. That isn’t a tholos tomb Kinsey; that’s an Attic washhouse. The Athenians constructed these buildings near the silver and iron mines in Southern Attica and used water to separate ore from other solids.
Back at Thorikos, Mike Holmes says, “I think the tholos tomb is nearby. I will unnecessarily climb this one meter tall retaining wall at Thorikos. Look at that ladder-work masonry in the lower left hand corner. That must point to the tholos.” However, Mike doesn’t realize that the wall is from the Classical period and was constructed nearly 800 years after the tholos tomb.
Benjamin O’Donnell searches the silver and lead mines of Laurion. No tholos tomb in here buddy, but that is some mighty fine ore. Just the type of ore that the Athenians would have used as a major revenue source during the fifth century BC.
At the Laurion Museum, Kelsey Blodget and Kristina Guild discover that the frieze from the Doric temple of Poseidon at Sounion is carved in Parian marble, much like the marble they (and by they, I mean Kyle) discovered at Paros. “Maybe we should go there, to Cape Sounion!” Kristina suggests. Kelsey agrees.
Benjamin O’Donnell and Peter Kitlas realize what happened to the once visible temple that Pausanias describes as having been seen by sailors as they rounded Cape Sounion. “I recognize what happened here,” Peter Kitlas says. “The Temple of Athena Sounias is a ‘wandering temple’ and was torn down and re-erected in the Athenian agora.” After this discovery, the boys forget the reason they came to Sounion– the tholos tomb – and they gallivant around, reenacting the ‘wandering temple.’
Frustrated by the search, Christopher Blankenship resorts to violence and throws Peter Kitlas’s body in the harbor of Thorikos. This harbor would have received shipments of grain for Athens, but today it receives Peter Kitlas.
“Maybe if I stand on the foundation of the cult statue of this little Doric temple next to the Temple of Athena Sounias, the Homeric hero Phrontis, to whom this temple was probably dedicated, would tell me where to search for the tholos tomb.” Lizz Sigler says. No dice; she gets lost and does not win.
Kelsey Blodget, Ray DiCiaccio, and Liz Stamoulis travel to the Temple of Poseidon at Sounion to search for the tomb and stop for a quick photo-op. Clearly, they are not committed to the search. The Doric, hexastyle temple was constructed in the middle of the fifth century.
Apparently, even the English poet Lord Byron thought that the tholos tomb was at theTemple of Poseidon at Sounion. He carved his name into the antis of the temple. It seems doubtful that Lord Byron ever found the tholos tomb.
Kristina Guild storms the fortification walls at Sounion to try to take the rest of the group by surprise. However, she gets tired from her hike through the thorny brush and never makes it to the temple or the tomb.
Kristina Guild joins Johann Maradey, Kinsey Stewart and Kelsey Blodget for lunch at the beach and quickly gives up on the search.
They carry the R-and-R to the beach. Do they seem dedicated to finding hidden Mycenaean tholos tombs? Definitely not.
Ray DiCiaccio returns to Thorikos to find the tomb. He learns that the tomb is on the mountain at Thorikos, but gets sad when he sees a fence blocking his way.
Nick Ortiz waited at Thorikos for everyone to come back. The most unlikely of winners, Nick discovers the tholos tomb. Nick says, “Tholos tombs are in the hearts and minds of all Greek FSPers.” He poses in the tomb and rejoices his victory.
Johann Maradey comforts Ray DiCiaccio because of Ray’s near victory. Ray DiCiaccio is convinced that Nick Ortiz’s cheesy discovery wasn’t the real tholos tomb. Readers: Ray was right. The real tholos tomb was on the mountain. However, no one except Kyle Jazwa wanted to hike and find it. Bad form, FSP. Bad form.
Everyone has enjoyed our eleven weeks in Greece, but we are also eager to return to America. Many of us will be spending the summer working at internships or on-campus for Sophomore Summer. Although we will all go our separate ways for the next three months, all but one of us will be back on campus for our Junior and Senior years. Kristina is graduating with the rest of the Class of 2007 in less than a week, but we hope that she will come back to Dartmouth to visit her old FSP friends.
Kyle wishes we could blog every day of our lives. He says, “I’m sure Caleb would love that. We could all blitz a blog entry to him each day during the summer and he could post it on the web. Sound good? Alright…”
Unless the rest of the FSP takes Kyle up on his offer, this will be the last blog entry of the trip. And so we say to you, dear readers, in case we don’t see you…“Good afternoon, good evening, and good night.”