Istanbul, August 28 : An ancient city in western Turkey, discovered by smugglers of ancient artifacts at an illegal excavation six years ago and recovered with soil by officials, is now waiting to be unearthed.
According to a report by the Turkish Press, local officials asked archaeologists to dig the region in Saruhanli town of the western province of Manisa to bring to light the ancient city, which is thought to date back to around 3rd or 4th century B.C.
"Six years ago, smugglers found a few pieces of historical artifacts at an illegal dig here. There were mosaics of a stag's head among them. But no researches have been carried out since then," said Suleyman Cinar, mayor of the village of Buyukhanli in the region.
"We believe that there is an ancient Roman city hidden beneath the soil," he said.
Cinar also said that the city could be the outskirts of the nearby ancient city of Sardis, the capital of the ancient kingdom of Lydia where the first money was coined in history.