Aegeus Society For Aegean Prehistory

BOOKS | 2017

1 December 2018

Minoan Architecture and Urbanism. New Perspectives on an Ancient Built Environment

Edited by Quentin Letesson & Carl Knappett

Minoan Architecture and Urbanism. New Perspectives on an Ancient Built Environment

City: Oxford

Year: 2017

Publisher: Oxford University Press

Description: Hardback, 393 p., 119 b/w figures, 7 b/w tables, 24.1 x 16 cm


Minoan Crete is rightly famous for its idiosyncratic architecture, as well as its palaces and towns such as Knossos, Malia, Gournia, and Palaikastro. Indeed, these are often described as the first urban settlements of Bronze Age Europe. However, we still know relatively little about the dynamics of these early urban centres. How did they work? What role did the palaces have in their towns, and the towns in their landscapes?

It might seem that with such richly documented architectural remains these questions would have been answered long ago. Yet, analysis has mostly found itself confined to building materials and techniques, basic formal descriptions, and functional evaluations. Critical evaluation of these data as constituting a dynamic built environment has thus been slow in coming.

This volume aims to provide a first step in this direction. It brings together international scholars whose research focuses on Minoan architecture and urbanism as well as on theory and methods in spatial analyses. By combining methodological contributions with detailed case studies across the different scales of buildings, settlements and regions, the volume proposes a new analytical and interpretive framework for addressing the complex dynamics of the Minoan built environment.


List of Figures [ix-xiv]

List of Tables [xv]

List of contributors [xvi-xxi]

1. Introduction: Minoan Built Environment: Past Studies, Recent Perspectives, and Future Challenges [1-20]
Quentin Letesson & Carl Knappett

Part I

2. Architecture: Building Dynamics at the Micro-Scale [23-30]
Quentin Letesson & Carl Knappett

3. Best Laid Plans: An Archaeology of Architectural Anomalies in Bronze Age Crete [31-56]
Tim Cunningham

4. Architectural Energetics and Late Bronze Age Cretan Architecture: Measuring the Scale of Minoan Building Projects [57-79]
Maud Devolder

5. Understanding Minoan in-House Relationships on Late Bronze Age Crete [80-104]
Jan Driessen

Part II

6. Urbanism: Built Space and Communities at the Meso-scale [107-113]
Quentin Letesson & Carl Knappett

7. The Development and Character of Urban Communities in Prehistoric Crete in their Regional Context: A Preliminary Study [114-180]
Todd Whitelaw

8. Minoan Group Design: The ‘View from the Bridge’ [181-203]
Clairy Palyvou

 9. Community Building/Building Community at Gournia [204-227]
Matthew Buell & John McEnroe

  1. The Middle Minoan Slipway for Ships at the Kommos Harbour, and Harbour Development in Prehistoric Crete [228-256]
    Joseph W. Shaw

Part III

11. Processes and Patterns at the Macro-Scale: Crete and Beyond [259-265]
Quentin Letesson & Carl Knappett

12. Computational Approaches to Minoan Settlement Interaction and Growth [266-288]
Eleftheria Paliou & Andrew Bevan

13. Lost in Translation: Settlement Organization in Postpalatial Crete, a View from the East [289-333]
Louise A. Hitchcock & Aren M. Maeir

14. Dining on the Fringe? A Possible Minoan-Style Banquet Hall at Ayia Irini, Kea and the Minoanisation of the Aegean Islands [334-360]
Rodney D. Fitzsimons & Evi Gorogianni

15. A Comparative Perspective on Minoan Urbanism [361-390]
Quentin Letesson, Carl Knappett & Michael E. Smith

Index [391-393]


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