Aegeus Society For Aegean Prehistory

BOOKS | 2008

15 January 2011

The Archaeology of Tomb A1K1 of Orthi Petra in Eleutherna: The Early Iron Age Pottery

Antonis Kotsonas

The Archaeology of Tomb A1K1 of Orthi Petra in Eleutherna: The Early Iron Age Pottery

City: Athens

Year: 2008

Publisher: Publications of the University of Crete

Description: Paperback, 397 p., 74 b/w figures, 17 graphs, 6 colour plates, 4 tables, 28x21 cm


The present volume publishes some of the finds and results of the excavations conducted by Professor N. Stampolidis of the University of Crete in the Early Iron Age necropolis of Orthi Petra in Eleutherna, Crete. The necropolis, which is a palimpsest of intensive human activity, the denser and most legible lines of which pertain to the 9th – 6th centuries BC, lies on the originally rather steep, but now terraced, west slopes of the hill of Prines, 20-40m above the Chalopota stream. Its layout, including the monuments and their date, as well as the rites performed have been discussed by Stampolidis on several occasions. Although the necropolis has produced rich and varied remains, pottery is by far the most copiously represented class. This is, however, hardly surprising, given the well-known, relentless indestructibility of ceramics, which sharply contrasts with the ephemeral nature of their primary function.

The present volume is an analysis of a large corpus of ceramic material recovered from the neighbouring trenches A1 and K1, which are located in the central part of the excavated section of the necropolis. The material in question was found in the interior and immediate exterior of a chamber tomb called tomb A1K1, which housed cremation urns and burial offerings. Very few vases were also found inside or directly next to monument A1K1, which was partly overlying the tomb. Because of the scale and variety of the ceramic and other material it yielded and its importance for the archaeology of Early Iron Age Crete, the Aegean and the Mediterranean, a series of publication were planned for this particular context.

The demands of this work, however, and the various other commitments of the contributors led the editor to the decision to issue the publications in question individually. The present study of the pottery is the second of the volumes in this series, whereas the first volume, which is currently in preparation, includes a detailed catalogue of the rich and varied finds recovered – including the ceramic vessels discussed here – and studies the location of the tomb and monument within the necropolis, as well as their excavation and architecture. Furthermore, it offers an account of the conservation of the two structures following the excavation. A third volume based on the other classes of finds and the burial customs has also been planned, whereas a fourth volume regarding the physical anthropological material recovered has already appeared.


Excavator’s foreword [9]

Acknowledgements [11]

List of illustrations [13]

Abbreviations and conventions [17]


CHAPTER 1: Introduction

1.1. Scope of the study [19]

1.2. Method and structure [22]


CHAPTER 2: Previous research on Cretan Early Iron Age pottery

2.1. A short history of the research on Cretan ceramics of the Early Iron Age [27]

2.2. The state of research on Early Iron Age pottery from Eleutherna and the surrounding area [28]


CHAPTER 3: Relative and absolute chronologies of Early Iron Age Eleutherna and other Cretan sites

3.1. Introduction [31]

3.2. Knossian chronology [31]

3.3. Chronologies of other Cretan sites [35]

3.4. Chronologies for the pottery from Eleutherna [41]


CHAPTER 4: Ceramic production at Eleutherna

4.1. Notes on the limitations within the study of ceramic production at Eleutherna [53]

4.2. Geology and fabrics [53]

4.3. Shaping and decorative techniques [56]

4.4. Modes of production, workshops and potter’s marks [60]

4.5. The production of Creto-Cypriot pottery [65]

4.6. Foreign potters/painters and ceramic production at Eleutherna [69]


CHAPTER 5: Formal analysis and classification of the locally produced pottery

5.1. Introduction [79]

5.2. Closed vessels: Storage vessels [80]

5.3. Closed vessels: Fast-pouring vessels [153]

5.4. Closed vessels: Slow-pouring vessels [168]

5.5. Open vessels: Deep open vessels [183]

5.6. Open vessels: Shallow open vessels [216]


CHAPTER 6: Imported pottery found in tomb A1K1 and the dissemination of ceramic styles in Early Iron Age Crete

6.1. Introduction [233]

6.2. Pottery imported from Cretan sites [236]

6.3. Pottery from other Aegean regions [256]

6.4. Pottery from the Eastern Mediterranean [282]

6.5. Pottery of indeterminate provenance [289]

6.6. Review of the provenance of imported pottery found in tomb A1K1 and its impact on Eleuthernian ceramics in light of evidence from other Cretan sites [294]


CHAPTER 7: Ceramic consumption in tomb A1K1

7.1. Introduction [299]

7.2. Providing pots for the dead: linking ceramic production and circulation with consumption [301]

7.3. Ceramic consumption in tomb A1K1 [305]

7.4. Overview of ceramic consumption in tomb A1Κ1 [332]


CHAPTER 8: Conclusions for the ceramic analysis and archaeology of Crete in the Early Iron Age

8.1. Introduction [335]

8.2. Ceramic analysis and the contribution of the present study [335]

8.3. Ceramic analysis and the archaeology of tomb A1K1 and Early Iron Age Crete [338]


Appendix by Eleni Nodarou with a foreword by Nicholas Chr. Stampolidis and Antonis Kotsonas

1. Introduction and aim of the analytical study [345]

2. Previous analytical research on pottery from Eleutherna [345]

3. The geology of the area [348]

4. Petrographic Fabric Groups [348]

5. Comparative material [353]

6. Discussion [354]

7. Petrographic descriptions [357]


References [363]

Plates [389]

Index [395]


Παρακαλούμε τα σχόλιά σας να είναι στα Ελληνικά (πάντα με ελληνικούς χαρακτήρες) ή στα Αγγλικά. Αποφύγετε τα κεφαλαία γράμματα. Ο Αιγεύς διατηρεί το δικαίωμα να διαγράφει εκτός θέματος, προσβλητικά, ανώνυμα σχόλια ή κείμενα σε greeklish.