he site was inhabited from the Neolithic Age (4th millennium BC). Thoricus was the mining centre of the Laureotica. There is evidence of lead extraction from the Early Helladic period (3rd millennium BC) and of silver (now exhausted) from 1500 BC. Mycenaean tholos tombs (15th century BC) and a Late Mycenaean installation (12th century BC), probably connected with the mines in the area, have been uncovered. The finds are housed in the National Archaeological Museum, Athens.
There were significant town walls and a postern. The town's harbour was to the south of the acropolis; the island of Makronisi (Macri) provides natural protection.
Cephalus is said to have died at Thoricus.
The ancient city's centre and its acropolis are on Velatouri hill and the theatre (ca. 525-480 BC) is a significant survival. The town was closely packed with irregular building of houses and smiths' workshops (many dating from the 7th-4th century BC). A small temple, perhaps dedicated to Hygieia, next to stoas with benches. The large Doric temple (late 5th century BC), may have been a Telesterion for the cult of Demeter and Persephone.
In April 1886, Walter Miller conducted the first excavation of the site, seeking the theater.