On the territory of the ruins of Hierapolis, (now Pamukkale, Turkey) it was found the tomb of the Apostle St. Philip. The Italian researchers (MAIER) took more than 30 years for searching church- tomb of Jesus Christ disciple in Asia Minor. "Over the years we have tried to find the grave or the Basilica of St. Philip, who was executed by the Romans in Hierpapolise about 2 thousand years ago," - said Francesco D'Andria (the third expedition leader MAIER) in an interview with broadcaster NTV.

Excavations of Basilica of St. Philip in Hierapolis Photo Excavations of Tomb of the Apostle St.Philip in Hierapolis Excavations of Basilica of the Apostle St.Philip in Hierapolis

First, researchers believed that St. Philip the Apostle was buried directly on the "hill of the victims" of Hierapolis, where the temple was built in the 5th century. However, "in the course of the excavations, that begun around the Church of St. Philip, we have found not only the ruins of a basilica but the tomb of Apostle Philip"- said Francesco D'Andria. Now in Pamukkale(Turkey) we have found the tomb of the Apostle. And the tomb has not yet been opened. Archaeologists, in turn, in no hurry to open the tomb, but promise to be sure to do it. According to the scientists, sensational discovery is extremely important for the whole Christian world and archeology. The name of St. Philip the Apostle is mentioned in the Gospel of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and in the Acts of the Apostles. Many people being in complete bewilderment. Until now it was assumed that the remains of St. Philip has always rested in Rome, in the Basilica of the twelfth apostles.

Apostle Philip Basilica of the twelfth apostles

The founder of the Italian Archaeological Mission in Hierapolis, Turkey - Paolo Verzone (professor of the Polytechnic Institute of Turin) raised the question of carrying out excavations on the high eastern hill outside the city walls in 1957. The octagonal church, a masterpiece of Byzantine architecture of the fifth century, was built from the local golden travertine and based on the knowledge of architects. It is closely related to the imperial court in Constantinople. The architecture of buildings is closely associated with complex numerical symbols: eight parties; octagon, inscribed in a square; triangular courtyard. Paolo discovered and excavated octagonal martirion St. Philip the Apostle and for a long time unsuccessfully sought his grave.

In 2001, archaeological work was resumed, particularly geophysical studies. But investigation did not bring new results. Nevertheless, one can not forget about activity Skardozi Giuseppe (Giuseppe Scardozzi) - researcher at the National Research Council's Institute of Archaeology and monumental sites (IBAM), located in the city of Lecce (Italy). During the study of images obtained from satellite martirion of Apostle St.Philip in Hierapolis and topographic surveys, he was discovered and excavated new shortcut to martirionu Apostle Philip, however, violates the rectangular grid of streets Hierapolis. Pilgrims, after passing through the gate of the north Byzantine gate, while moving along the main street to the Basilica, and then turned to the east. After crossing a wooden bridge, the faithful wash in octagonal Terme, what would the next morning to come to the sanctuary clean. The practice of ritual purification was used in those days everywhere. In addition, the washing was performed, and the fountain, next to the stairs leading to the matririonu. It was assumed that the believers stayed overnight in simple dwellings, cut in the rocks. This "incubation" scheme practice everywhere, including around the church of Saints Cosmas and Damian in Constantinople.

The breakthrough in the search for the tomb of the Apostle Philip occurred in 2010-2016. With the permission of the Turkish Ministry of Culture, the Italian Archaeological Mission in Hierapolis (MAIER) began the large-scale in-depth excavations near the stairs leading to the martirionu. Slightly gone deep into the soil, archaeologists have discovered a huge cluster of well-hewn stones and travertine marble. Clearing debris, researchers found the upper part of the gable of the tomb or chapel of the basilica. However, this is hardly aroused great interest in 2010. Indeed, the entire territory of the mountainside surrounding the city of Hierapolis in the east is still a huge necropolis!

However, the archaeological site of the chapel were continued under the leadership of Pierre Kaggi (Piera Caggia, Ibam-Cnr) and led to a completely unexpected result. Careful cleaning of the territory allowed to find the remains of the great basilica with three naves. On its ruins found marble columns with exquisite decor 1 century AD, crosses barriers with ornaments, decorative elements in the form of palm trees, set in niches. In addition, the floor of the nave is made of inlaid marble. The architrave of the basilica is decorated with the monogram of Theodosius (Theodosius), which reflects the special relationship with the Byzantine emperor facilities. The richness and variety of ornaments Basilica daily enriched with new examples!

But even more unusual is the fact that this "three-aisle" basilica was built around the tomb-chapel of the Roman period. Both buildings have a common foundation, and the entrance to the chapel is possible along the marble staircase. Pilgrims climbing up, come to The tomb of Apostle St.Philip in Hierapolis the porch of the tomb to see the lamp, icons and relics of St. Philip. After going through the tomb, the faithful descend on the other side and out of the Basilica of the hall, decorated with exquisite mosaic depicting fish. It is inadvertently creates the connection to "miracle of the loaves and fishes" (John 6: 5). Apparently, hundreds of thousands of people's heads bowed here in a bow that would enter the chapel. Marble floor tiles at the entrance to the tomb is extremely abraded. On the porch of the rocks are clearly visible a few deep holes. Rather, the elements for hanging or locking the wooden door of the chapel.

The opening of the tomb-chapel of Turkey is the key to solving old mysteries. The Museum of Richmond in the United States (Museum of Richmond, USA) for a long time kept the artifact - a bronze amulet or seal (stamp). It depicts bronze amulet Saint Phillip Saint Phillip, distributes bread to believers on the occasion of the solemn assembly, or (panegyris). On both sides of the Apostle Philip depicted buildings, each of which is a staircase. On the right hand of the saint, no doubt, is martirion dome. A second building with a gabled roof for a long time could not be identified. But now the mystery revealed!

Now archaeological researches allow to collect a lot of accumulated disparate facts into a coherent whole. Basilica of St. Philip the Apostle's tomb - is the fulcrum. This shrine. It was located in the river valley Lukos between Colossi (referred to in the letters of St. Paul), and Laodicea, which was located one of the seven churches of the Apocalypse (mentioned in the "Revelations" of John the Evangelist).