Hellenistic Phase

Komana was a sanctuary site dedicated to Ma. The original center of the cult was at Komana Cappadocia and it was an Anatolian cult. Ma as a word meant motherbut her attributes identified her as a warrior type goddess. One of her epithets was aniketos/invincible, another henikephoros/the bringer of victory. She was identified with Enyo by Strabo, and with Semele and Athena by Plutarch. Her cult has been associated with the transition to adulthood by both genders. This association is also strengthened by the mythical story of Iphigenia and Orestes bringing the rites and the statue of Artemis Tauropoulos from Scythia to Komana and dedicating their hair there.

At both Komana Pontica and Cappadocia there was a priest, second in rank to the king at Pontus and Cappadocia alike, temple servants no less than 6000 in number, sacred servant, and a festival.

Archaeological levels dating to the Hellenistic period could not be detected anywhere on Hamamtepe until 2018. In 2018, a previously unknown context was reached. Briefly in 2019, then again in 2020 this context was excavated in order to shed light on its dating. The context was composed of five layers and represented two architectural levels. The pottery assemblage together with coins, terracotta female votive figurines, a bronze fibula and some odd finds that travelled from the Aegean and the Mediterranean indicated that these levels represented the Hellenistic occupation at the site. The pottery assemblage includes groups falling in the so-called Galatian/Central Anatolian Banded Ware, West Slope Ware, West Anatolian Banded Ware and Color Coated Ware-A. The context is rich in animal bones, a group differing greatly from the Medieval assemblage. Two distinct levels of walls have been uncovered in the limited space between the foundations of 6/7th century buildings in deep soundings. The second level wall discovered in 2020 seems to be fully intact, promising the recovery of the plan of a complete building unlike the upper level where foundation trenches of the later walls have severely destroyed the entirety of the structures. A late 3rd/2nd century B.C. bronze coin of Knossos with a labyrinth on the reverse and a Menkheperre scarab most probably dating to the Late Period of ancient Egypt (664-332 B.C.) have been the highlights of the three seasons of excavations at the Hellenistic levels.

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