Two hundred and fifty metres north of the main harbour mole, just as the shore-line road curves to the left, the exiguous remains of a Roman construction (now protected by iron railings), to the left of the road, are claimed by local tradition to be the remains of a ‘baptismal font used by St John’. The only substantial ancient remains on the island are in fact on the hill-top directly above here to the west at Kastelli, where the ruins of a fortified acropolis of the 4th century bc still stand. (The first road turning inland from the south end of the beach, curves round to the left; a flight of steps to the right then brings you to a path, which skirts the east side of the hill, leading up to a saddle with low stone walls and wide views. From here the previously hidden church of Aghios Konstantinos comes into view on the top of the rise: the ancient area stretches south along the ridge from above the church.) The imposing position overlooks three bays: Skala (east), Chochlakas (southwest) and Merikas (north). Both along the top and on the eastern slopes, there are quantities of broken pottery in the surface of the ground. Analysis of this has shown continuous occupation from prehistoric times, through Classical and Hellenistic, and into Roman times. The surviving parts of the enceinte of walls and towers are visible on the climb up, the best preserved being the north and northeast sections, whose compact isodomic masonry is intact to some height: the northeast tower stands to 3.5m. The stone is volcanic and prone to erosion which has softened the exactly fitting cuts and drafted corners. Just above the church of Aghios Konstantinos is the northwest tower where a flight of six stairs within the tower’s structure is visible. Given the extent of these remains, it would appear that Patmos was not as deserted as is customarily imagined when John was exiled here at the end of the 1st century ad.

Patmos Island is part of the Dodecanese Island Group, Greece.

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