|Report of 1974 restoration of the East Basilica. Text and illustrations|
S. G. Ryzhov
Report of 1974 restoration of the East Basilica. Text and illustrations.
The East Basilica is located in the north-east area of the ancient city, in the end of the Main Street. In front of the church, there is a square from the Roman period that was partly not covered with mediaeval dwelling quarters and paved with large limestone slabs.
Its ground plan is elongated rectangle divided by two colonnades of 7 columns each into nave and two aisles. The eastern part of the building does not survive now because a part of the shore with pentahedral outside and circular inside apse fell into the sea together with the shore. North-east corner of the building adjoins the remains of cross mausoleum buit of large roughstone. Only fragments of substructure mortar survived of mosaics that once covered all the nave and aisles of the basilica.It was excavated by the Odessa Society for History and Antiquities in 1877 and later investigated by R. Kh. Leper, in 1908.
The restoration was aimed at reconstructing the ground plan of the basilica using remaining parts of it and to show the masonry technique by raising the walls up to 1.3-1.5 m. The works were also organised in the cross church (mausileum?) that adjoins the basilica on the north (fig. 10). The excavations of the church from 1877-1878 and 1908 discovered remains of a burial in the north aisle close to stylobate. The fill of the grave contained fragments of silver gilded artifact in the form of wide ring and almost entirely preserved bronze mirror (figs. 12 and 13). No new data for establishing the chronology of the basilica was obtained in course of the works. Past scholars dated its construction tot he late-fifth century.
File no. 1732/2.