Massive structures discovered under 3,000-year-old garrison

Massive structures under the Zerzevan Castle, a 3,000-year-old Roman garrison in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır, have come to light during the ongoing excavation works at the site.

The history of this ancient castle, initially serving as a border garrison for Rome, traces its origins to the Assyrian era. Built as a military settlement in the third century A.D., it continued to serve this purpose until being overtaken by Islamic armies.

Inside the castle walls, diverse architectural remnants provide testimony to its illustrious past. A watchtower known as the southern tower, standing at an impressive height of 21 meters and serving as a strategic lookout point, is especially noteworthy.

The castle encompasses a church, an administrative building, an arsenal, and a rock altar situated in the southern region.

Excavation works that started in 2014 at the castle have brought to light numerous artifacts.

Under the site, residential areas, water cisterns, a church, a shelter, and Mithras Temple have been recently discovered.

The temple is of particular importance as it is the first temple of its kind discovered at the eastern border of the Roman Empire.

"Through the excavations, we will be able to find answers to some of the mysteries of underground structures," stated Aytaç Coşkun, the head of the excavation team.

Coşkun emphasized the vastness of the site, mentioning the existence of a city on the ground as well as a substantial underground city within Zerzevan Castle.

The unearthing of massive multi-story structures suggests their capacity to accommodate thousands of individuals, Coşkun said.

The excavation efforts will now expand to explore the underground areas beneath the larger city,...

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