Author of the text: Tziolas Ioannis
The archaeological site “LEIVITHRA” is located at the foothill of Mount Olympus, near Leptokarya. Orpheus was born and died there. Excavations began in 1995, and the archaeologist who launched excavations is Tziolas Ioannis.
According to mythology, Orpheus was the son of King Oeagrus and Calliope, muse of epic poetry. He was the most famous singer, musician and poet in the world. He played the lyre donated by God Apollo. The power of Orpheus’s song and playing was miraculous. As he sang, the flock of birds were circling above his head, the fish were popping out of the sea, the rivers were stopping their currents, etc. All the power and the mightness of Orpheus’s music appeared when he went down to the Underworld to bring to light his beloved wife Eurydice.
Shortly after she was married to Orpheus, beautiful Eurydice was executed by a viper. Orpheus could not overcome her death and went to the Underworld to search for her. His song and playing beat the forces of death and the darkness of the world of the dead.
When the Orpheus’ performance resounded through the Underworld, Cerberus became tamed, Charon stopped his boat … The Orpheus’ song made delicate even the strict judges of the dead. Even the rulers of the Underworld did not resist this unparalleled singer. They returned Eurydice, but they forbade him to look at her until they see the light of day.
Orpheus went to the exit from the Underworld, but, tortured with suspicions and longing, he turned and looked at Eurydice. At the same time, he lost his beloved wife for the second time, forever. The desperate Orpheus tried to return to the Empire of the dead, but this time the door of the Underworld remained closed.
When he returned from the Underworld, Orpheus presented his theory of the immortality of the soul of men. One day, Orpheus gathered the men from Leivithra in a closed chamber (the first “Telestirion” in Greece), and women, revolted for being excluded, grabbed the weapons that men left in front of the door, killed the poet’s supporters, and tore apart the poet himself.
Muses from Leivithra then collected the broken Orpheus’ body and buried it in today’s archaeological site “LEIVITHRA”, under Olympus, near Leptocarya.
If you are coming to Leptokarya, be sure to visit this archaeological site.