Draycott, Catherine M. (2016) 'Activating the Achaemenid landscape. The Broken Lion Tomb (Yılan Taş) and the Phrygian Highlands in the Achaemenid Period.', in The Phrygian lands over time (from prehistory to the middle of the 1st Millenium AD). Leuven: Peeters Press. Colloquia Antiqua.
In its day the collapsed, massive rock-cut tomb known as the Broken Lion Tomb, or Yılan Taş, located in the Köhnüş Valley north of Afyon, would have been one of the most impressive tomb monuments in Asia Minor. Now lying in a pile of confused blocks that sheared off the edge of the cliff face into which it was carved, its original form is hard to imagine and its past glory and status not widely appreciated. The style of its once rich relief sculptures suggests it was erected in the Achaemenid Persian Period, possibly in the first half or middle of the 5th century BC. Contemporary occupation in the Phrygian Highlands is not well understood, but settlement remains seem modest, and although there may be some elements of continuity, overall the religious status of the area seems to change through the Persian period, the main locus of Matar worship shifting at some point to Pessinus further east. This paper considers the appearance of the tomb and poses questions about its context, which can contribute to the history of the Phrygian Highlands and the Achaemenid Empire more broadly.
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