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Guide to the collection I:
The British Museum Turner Bequest
excavations of 1895


The Turner Bequest team excavated widely around the ancient acropolis and the modern village of Episkopi, but concentrated their efforts in five main areas, designated A to E and marked on the accompanying map. It is clear from both the written descriptions of operations and the sketch maps preserved in the Kourion Notebook (which formed the basis of the maps in Excavations in Cyprus) that most of these sites extended over large distances with uneven coverage and effort according to the physical conditions and the likelihood of good results in any one area. The sketch maps sometimes note unproductive trenches or tombs, usually marked as unnumbered squares, as well as occasionally indicating where earlier archaeologists worked, such as in Site B where Cesnola’s presence is marked.

Plan of the Kourion area, showing the five main sites excavated by the British Museum in 1895 around the modern village of Episkopi and the ancient acropolis of Kourion. (Excavations in Cyprus, 56)


The following description of each of the British Museum sites is designed to provide some general geographical information about the topography of areas explored, and the circumstances under which the original work was undertaken in 1895, but also to outline subsequent work which has taken place here in order to place the older discoveries within a modern archaeological context. Details of individual tombs are provided below in the next section.

Sites and tomb groups