The Tunnel of Eupalinos used to be the aqueduct of the ancient city of Samos.
It was called the “two-mouthed tunnel” by the great ancient Greek historian Herodotus (484-425 BC), and is one of the most significant technical achievements of Greek antiquity.
Herodotus is the first and only one in antiquity who mentions the monument.
See some interesting and impressing numbers* about the Tunnel of Eupalinus:
- 1.036 m is the length of the rectilinear tunnel.
- 400 m3 of water each day were passing through the clay pipes.
- 1.363 kg of gold, equal to 52 talents, and corresponding to 222.000 ancient drachmas was the total cost of the project (today 1.363 kg of gold cost 73.591.000 euros).
- 15 square pillars with cover plates on top where put in a big rectangular basement to create the tank. Today its roof is the floor of St. John’s church.
- 3 gods accepted Eupalinos offers before the coonstruction begun: Hera, protector of Samos, Pluto, the god of the underworld and Hephastus, the god of fire, metalworking, stone masonry, forges and the art of sculpture.
- 1992 was the year when UNESCO listed the Tunnel of Eupalinos in the World Heritage List
* Source: Article by Vassia Antonopoulou in GREC14N, the Fraport Greece Official Magazine
Info about the Tunnel of Eupalinos
The Tunnel of Eupalinos is a tunnel 1036 meters long, hewn from the rock through Mt. Kastron, starting from the north side and ending to the south. It is located 55 m above sea level and 180 m below the top of the mountain.
The dimensions of the tunnel are 1.80 x 1.80 m Inside it, at a depth of 2-9 m is the channel that carried the water to the city. Two architectural phases have been distinguished:
a) the Archaic, with the polygonal masonry and the pointed roof and
b) the Roman, with a barrel-vaulted roof.
The aqueduct was the work of Eupalinos, son of Naustrophos, an engineer from Megara. Its construction started in 550 B.C., during the tyranny of Polycrates and lasted for ten years.
Watch how the Tunnel of Eupalinos was constructed: