The Hellenistic Tower of Chimarrou

South of Filóti, on the road to Kalandós, one can visit an interesting ancient tower from the Hellenistic period (3rd century BC). It lies at 340 m altitude on the low hills southwest of mount Zeus, in a hilly landscape that seems dry and barren in the summer, but in spring is covered with lush green. It can be assumed that the whole area was used for agriculture in antiquity; since the Bronze Age, this area of ​​Naxos was particularly densely populated.

The Tower of Chimárrou stands on a low elevation surrounded by higher hills.

The area seems dry and barren in the summer. In spring, however, many valleys and slopes are covered in a surprisingly lush green.

The architecture of the tower

The Tower of Chimárrou has a round shape as most of the other Hellenistic towers of the Cyclades. Its inner diameter is 7.2 meters. The walls are about one meter thick, which results in an outer diameter of over 9 meters. Towards the top, the tower gets a little thinner. It is preserved up to a height of 15 meters (about 40 rows of stones of 30 to 50 cm height). Originally, it was probably made up of five floors. The top floor and about half of the next one have collapsed, presumably due to lightning. We don’t know whether the tower once had a pointed roof or a roof terrace.

The Tower of Chimárrou dates from the 3rd century BC. It served as a place of retreat and defense for a small settlement to which the residents could withdraw during an attack.

The walls of the tower are about one meter thick and consist of an outer wall of larger stones and an inner wall of smaller stones. Both walls are connected by transversal stones (every third or fourth row consists alternately of running and transversal stones, the latter being almost square or a bit wider from the outside).

Here on can see in some of the rows approximately square stones lying between the oblong “running” stones: These are the transversal stones that connect the inner and the outer wall. The tower has been encased in a scaffold since 2004; the picture dates from the time before that.

The entrance with its thick lintel is located on the weather-protected southern side of the tower.

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