The Archaeological Museum of Komotini was designed by Aris Konstantinidis, an architect, and was commissioned in 1976. The exhibits on display are from the Neolithic to the Byzantine period, from the excavations of the Thracian archaeological sites, and reveal much about the prehistory and history of the Aegean Thrace and Komotini. The museum also has exhibits of folklore art, agriculture operations and basket making.
The museum structure is prominent in Komotini for its architectural elegance. The exhibits cover the Neolithic and Iron Age sites of colonies of Greece in the remote northern Aegean, Greek art, holy sites, Roman hamlets and artifacts of funeraries. The collections have informative display boards with the history of Thrace. Artefacts include Roman coins, clay statuette, gilded wreaths, and ceramics of the Byzantine period. A detailed map showing the location of the archaeological sites in Thrace and Macedonia are also provided to the visitors. There is also a clay figurine from Abdera dated to early 200 BC, although the gilded bust of Septimius Severus (193–211 AD) is cited to be the most impressive exhibit in the museum.
Another interesting exhibit in the museum is a grave stele with images marked on both its faces, made from Thacian marble. It was found at ancient Dikaia in 1927, and is an example of late Ionian art of the Late Archaic period dated to 300 BC. This slab is without a crown and has decorations of the Lesbian cymatium in its top portion. An image of a young person, adorned with a himation, with hair tied and dropping to the nape, is depicted in the front portion of the stele. The back face of the stele displays an attendant carrying a stool and a dog. Wall text relating to the exhibits is in English.References:
The Château d'Olhain is probably the most famous castle of the Artois region. It is located in the middle of a lake which reflects its picturesque towers and curtain walls. It was also a major stronghold for the Artois in medieval times and testimony to the power of the Olhain family, first mentioned from the 12th century.
The existence of the castle was known early in the 13th century, but the present construction is largely the work of Jean de Nielles, who married Marie d’Olhain at the end of the 15th century.
The marriage of Alix Nielles to Jean de Berghes, Grand Veneur de France (master of hounds) to the King, meant the castle passed to this family, who kept it for more than 450 years. Once confiscated by Charles Quint, it suffered during the wars that ravaged the Artois. Besieged in 1641 by the French, it was partly demolished by the Spaniards in 1654, and finally blown-up and taken by the Dutch in 1710. Restored in 1830, it was abandoned after 1870, and sold by the last Prince of Berghes in 1900. There is also evidence that one of the castles occupants was related to Charles de Batz-Castelmore d'Artagnan, the person Alexandre Dumas based his Three Musketeers charictor d'Artagnan on.
During the World War I and World War II, the castle was requisitioned first by French troops, then Canadian and British soldiers. The current owner has restored the castle to its former glory.