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Sarcophagus of Mar Elian

The Byzantine sarcophagus believed to hold the remains of Mar Elian (St. Julian) and is covered with pilgrimage graffiti believed to date back to at least the C9th. The form of the sarcophagus is late antique and dates from the C5th-C8th. These images show the tomb before it was cleaned by excavators and damage to the grave, reputedly caused by villagers in the 1920s, is clearly visible. It also shows the sarcophagus before its coverings were removed with the votive offerings placed at the shrine by the faithful and the green satin covering given by local Muslims denoting the tomb of a holy man in their tradition.


Emma Loosley

Date of Visit

23rd July 2001
1st July 2002


Emma Loosley


Metadata and all media released under Creative CommonsCreative Commons BY-NC-SA unless otherwise indicated

Related Resources

The photographs of the 2001-2003 survey and excavation seasons have been lodged with the Archaeological Data Service and are reproduced here with their permission. For those who would like more specialised information such as context and intervention numbers or direction of shot please refer to:




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The Dayr Mar Elian Archaeological Project (DMEAP)


Emma Loosley, “Sarcophagus of Mar Elian,” Architecture and Asceticism, accessed June 18, 2024,

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