When diversity matters: exploring funerary evidence in Middle Minoan III Crete
Luca Girella Studi Micenei ed Egeo-Anatolici 1 (2015, new series): 117-136
Aside from limited studies on individual cemeteries or tomb types, analysis of Middle Minoan III funerary evidence has remained in the shadow. Reasons can be found in the dearth of archaeological remains, and it is useful to remember that most of the evidence for this period, both domestic and funerary, derived mainly from sites occupied in the following period (Late Minoan IA) and destroyed in Late Minoan IB. By collecting information on tomb architecture, cemetery distribution and burial assemblages the paper aims to investigate the development and regionalism of burial practices during Middle Minoan III, and to explore aspects of the social and political landscape. In particular, the north-central and south-central Crete will be considered to be paradigmatic in understanding how burial choices were strictly related to different polities and social realities. The variety of burial practices among different regions of the island is also highlighted and provides significant evidence for the transitional stage of Middle Minoan III that saw regional shifts after the destruction of the first Palaces and before the reconstruction of new centres of power.