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URGO (Orgon) Bouches-du-Rhône, France.

A Gallo-Greek oppidum of the Salyens, on the hill of Beauregard at the extreme NE of the Alpilles chain. A strategic site dominating the Durance Valley, where there are many foundations of Gallic huts carved out of the rock. Coins have often been found on the surface, almost all minted in Massalia (Marseille); noteworthy are two silver obols with sunken reverse dating from the 6th c. B.C. The obverse of one coin shows a Corinthian helmet with visor and sidepieces; the reverse, a bearded, helmeted head. There are also obols with the head of Apollo on the reverse side with M A, and little bronze coins with a bull (3d-1st c. B.C.).

Excavations in the gully of the cemetery in 1887 and 1958 have yielded seven Gallic terracotta andirons with a ram's head, fragments of bricks impressed with decorations of persons, animals, and geometric designs (museums of Aviguon and St-Rémy-de-Provence), and many pottery sherds. Other discoveries include an altar to Jupiter Taranis with an inscription in Greek letters, and Roman altars dedicated to Apollo and Sylvanus. In 1967 a terracotta Jewish oil lamp from the 1st c. B.C. was found in the Vau quarter (type 3 of Dressel's classification) decorated on the top with a double candlestick with seven branches. This is the oldest menorah found in Gaul (Musée Judéo-Comtadin, Cavaillon).


A. Sagnier, “Une inscription gauloise trouvée à Orgon,” Mémoires de l'Académie de Vaucluse (1887); id., Forma Orbis romani V (1936) No. 492; F. Benoit, L'art primitif méditerranéen de la vallée du Rhône (1955)MI; L. Poumeyrol, “Le site de Beauregard à Orgon,” Cahiers ligures de Préhistoire et d'Archéologie 8 (1959)PI; B. Blumenkranz, “Les premières implantations de Juifs en France,” CRAI (1969)MI.


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