Hellenistic store rooms at W side of South Market, from NE, Miletus

Hellenistic warehouse on W side of South Market, from N, Miletus

Context: Miletus
Type: Stoa
Summary: Rectangular market area in center of city, south of the North Market and the Bouleuterion. Bordered at the east by a long portico, and at the north and south by two L-shaped stoas.
Date: ca. 280 BC - ca. 150 BC

Overall dimensions of agora: 164 m. x 194 m. Dimensions of east portico: overall length 189.2 m.; depth 22.69 m.; depth of portico 7.06 m.; intercolumniation of colonnade 2.38 m.; width of rooms 4.17 m.; depth of rooms 6.29 m. (front row), 2.69 m. (middle row), 4.12 m. (back row).Dimensions of north L-shaped stoa: length of north wing 129.25 m.; depth 13.77 m.; length of west wing 101.05 m.; depth 13.52 m.; intercolumniation of exterior colonnade 2.23 m.; intercolumniation of interior colonnade 4.46 M. Dimensions of south L-shaped stoa: length of west wing ca. 84.5 m.; depth ca. 13.50 m.; length of south wing 126.73 m.; depth 21.11 m.; depth of portico 14.32 m.; intercolumniation of exterior colonnade ca. 2.11 m.; intercolumniation of interior colonnade 4.22 m.

Region: Ionia
Period: Hellenistic

Architectural Order:

Doric and Ionic(?). The colonnade of the east portico is Doric. The outer colonnades of the north and south stoa were Doric; the interior colonnades may have been Ionic.


In plan, the South Market is a large, rectangular space defined by stoas. At the east extends a long portico with three rows of rooms behind it; at the north is a two-aisled L-shaped stoa without additional rooms; and at the south, a second two-aisled L-shaped stoa with a single row of rooms behind the south wing.

Date Description:

A fragmentary inscription preserved on a Doric architrave found to the north of the east portico refers to a son of Seleukos I; if the inscription can be connected with the east portico, it indicates that this structure was funded by Antiochos I (280-261 B.C.) Knackfuss 1924, 44-45, 281.


The planning of the South Market at Miletus dates to slightly later than the North Market at Miletus. The first structure built here was the long east portico with its three rows of shops; this building was most likely funded by Antiochos I in the early third century B.C. Sometime in the third or second century B.C. the two L-shaped stoas at the north and south were built, possibly in imitation of the L-shaped stoas of the North Market. The north L-shaped stoa appears to have been built before that in the south. The appearance of the South Market in the late Hellenistic period evolved gradually, in a similar manner to the North Market, and may not have been anticipated by fourth-century planners. Construction continued at the South Market throughout the Roman period, most notably with the erection of the monumental and elaborate Market Gate in the north-east corner. The Roman restorations to the South Market had the effect of reducing the area to a fully enclosed square, with the construction of gateways in the north-east and south-east connecting the stoas.

Other Notes:

The interpretation of the South Market as the political agora of Miletus is open to question, although statue bases of leading figures of the Hellenistic and Roman periods were erected in the colonnades of the east portico. The east portico is interpreted by the excavators as a shopping area, and may be the *S*T*O*A*S*T*A*D*I*A*I*A"Stoa of a stade," referred to in an inscription from Didyma. In the north east corner of the South Market, underneath the location of the elaborate Market Gate dating to the second century A.D., are the remains of a double Corinthian portico dedicated to Laodike by the people of Miletus - probably Laodike II, wife of Antiochos II (261-246 B.C.) The building is probably a Hellenistic fountain house. The South Agora covered an area equivalent to twenty city blocks or insulae at the site, and was designed to conform to the grid pattern city plan.

Other Bibliography:

Knackfuss 1924; von Gerkan 1924, 99-101, fig. 12; Wycherley 1938, 1005-1011; Kleiner 1968, 61-63; Coulton 1976, 261, fig. 86