After the earthquake of April 23rd, 1933, which caused the destruction of a big part of Kos Town, the Eastern Archaeological area, that is situated in the walled city or the city of the knights in the harbour zone, was excavated almost entirely, bringing to light the Eastern half of the port district and the extreme Northern section of the ancient city.
The North wall
The Eastern Archaeological area is intersected, from East to West, by the remnants of the 4th century BC North wall, that left the port outside of the city. The wall formed a curved line which followed, at a certain distance, the contour of the port’s coastline. One other section of the old wall was found under the foundations of the Archaeological Museum.
The Hellenistic temple of Heracles
A little Temple of the Hellenistic Age (12.60 X 7.50m) was built on the South-East corner of an artificial mound at the 2nd century BC and was probably destroyed by the earthquake of 469 AD. The discovery of a walled inscription piece and a part of a statue of Heracles (now walled up at the NW corner of the Lotzia mosque) made the Italian archaeologists believe that it is a temple dedicated to Heracles.
In the course of the 2nd to 3rd century AD, new structures were built in the area of the temple, namely a baptistry of an early Christian basilica and mosaic floors depicting a fisherman, Orpheus with animals and the Symposium of Heracles. During medieval times or at the beginning of the modern period, a small chapel of Agios Dimitrios was built over the temple that was demolished by the Italians after the 1933 earthquake.
The Eastern stoa or colonnade
The Eastern stoa, built during the 4th to 3rd century was perhaps the oldest structure of the port district. Remains of its construction are discernible between the wall foundations of the early Christian basilica that was built over it at the end of the 5th century AD. The stoa was built on a mound, 1.95m above sea level. The stoa was dug up by Italian archaeologists on a frontage of about 42m from NW, under the Lozia mosque, toward the SE. The stoa was rebuilt in Roman times but was ultimately destroyed by the 469 AD earthquake, as evidenced by the 9 bases on sight and the 8 overturned columns with visible traces of fire. In the fall of 1936, the 8 columns were restored, of which 6 stand until today.
A small statue of Marsyas hanging form a trunk of a tree that was discovered in the stoa is exhibited in the Archaeological Museum. Small statues of bronze and oil lamps of the Roman period disappeared in October 1943, upon the occupation of Kos by the Germans.
The remains of a little temple (7.2X4.8m), probably from the Hellenistic Age, can be seen between the basilica and the sanctuary of Heracles.
The double sanctuary that was built in the 2nd century BC is identified with the Aphrodision or with the sanctuary of Pandimos and Pontian Aphrodite. The overall structure which concerns a four-sided peristyle was built on a base 2.5m above sea level and its dimensions are 62.4X45m. On the North side, there are two projecting bodies: the propylaea. At the Southern half of the area, there were two adjoining temples of equal dimensions, one dedicated to Pandimos Aphrodite and the other to Pontian Aphrodite, whose shafts coincide with those of the propylaea. The facade of the sanctuary was facing the entrance of the harbour and was the first building that appeared in the eyes of someone arriving to the city by sea.
The sanctuary was destroyed by the earthquake of 469 AD. It was despoiled during the 5th-6th century AD, primarily in order to build the basilica which suffered the same fate from subsequent earthquakes.
The Agora, with a North-South direction, takes up the west zone of the Eastern Archeological Area and led from the port to the interior of the city. The building is 82m wide and 150m long.
A section of the Eastern exterior wall has been preserved and is a beautiful example of the construction techniques from the 4th-3rd century BC that constitutes the first construction period of the Agora. The interior of the building, the whole pedestal of the Northern sides, part of the Eastern pedestal and the NW corner have also been preserved from that period. The inner stoas were rebuilt with marble during the first half of the 2nd century BC, i.e. the second construction period. During the third construction period in the 3rd century AD, a monumental marble staircase about 60m long was built to the North and connected the Agora with the port district. At the inner side of the entrance, a series of large concrete vaults were built, a revetment of bas-reliefs and images. The vaults are still visible under the chapel of Agios Konstantinos, located near the Northern end of the Agora.
The complete destruction of the Agora must have occurred during the earthquake of 554 AD.
Numerous architectural fragments of great dimensions are piled up to the North of the Agora, which most probably belonged to a temple of the 1st century AD, the one and only monument remnant of the 1st century AD in Kos.