Could Archeologists Have Found Aristotle’s Tomb 2,400 Years After His Death?

Proof is inconclusive but the archaeologists are sure.

Ludovisi Collection, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Bust of Aristotle. Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

Greek archaeologists believe that they may have unearthed the tomb of Aristotle 2,400 years after his death, after an excavation in Macedonia revealed many items linking back to the Greek philosopher.

The dig, part of a 20-year project that took place in Aristotle’s birthplace Stagira, Macedonia, on the East Coast of the Greek mainland, has experts cautiously excited. While it is known that Aristotle died in Chalcis, Evia in 322 BC, this archaeological discovery leads scholars to believe that his ashes may have been transported back to Stagira for burial, according to the Daily Mail.

Though there is currently no hard proof, factors such as location, period of construction, as well as objects found at the site, such as coins dated to the time of Alexander the Great, Aristotle’s pupil, have lead archaeologists to strongly believe that the site at Stagira is indeed the tomb of Aristotle.

This discovery of the tomb—a mounted dome with a marbled floor dated back to between 323 and 32 BC—holds universal importance considering the role of Aristotle in shaping Western philosophy. Aristotle interacted with important figures of his time; acting as a tutor for Alexander the Great and having been a pupil of Plato. His work has had huge influence on modern logic, Christian theology, and even the evolution of theater, while also touching on metaphysics, biology, physics, botany, and medicine.

Photograph by Christaras A, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Could this be the burial place of Aristotle? Photo: Christaras A via Wikimedia Commons

Despite the inevitable excitement surrounding this discovery, it is important to put things into perspective. While Northern Greece has turned up many archaeological findings, not all of these discoveries have been given the seal of approval. A recent incident in 2014 led archaeologists to believe they had discovered the tomb of Alexander the Great in Amphipolis, also located in central Macedonia. However, this claim was later shut down by scholars and met with much criticism from authorities, who maintained that the discovery was wrongly and prematurely sensationalized to distract Greek citizens from the country’s economic hardships, according to The Guardian.

This latest excavation has roused much enthusiasm and anticipation but despite the attention it has gleaned, the discovery remains at its infancy. Considering past events, its eager audience should continue to follow the event as further research is performed and more facts come to light.

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