Aegeus Society For Aegean Prehistory


22 September 2012

The New Swedish Cyprus Expedition 2012 at Hala Sultan Tekke. The preliminary report on the excavations April-May 2012 is now available on the internet

The third season of excavation at Hala Sultan Tekke added knowledge to the project, the main objective of which is the investigation and determination of the complete occupational sequence of the pre-12th century levels. New walled and open spaces from Strata 1 and 2 were exposed in Area 6. Another pictorial krater with birds was excavated. The terminology for the much discussed Cypriote-produced White Painted Wheel-made ware has been revised and a new terminology is suggested, i.e. ‘White Painted Wheel-made Geometric Style (WPGS)’ and ‘White Painted Wheel-made Pictorial Style (WPPS)’, of which the latter includes the Creature Krater from 2010 and the Bird Krater from this season. The hypothesis that a tsunami destroyed parts of the city in the 14th or 13th century BC is discussed. An additional radar survey of some 1.3 ha revealed substantial structures, i.e. new city quarters.

There is evidence of additional spaces from Stratum 2 close to the southern fence which are only partially excavated and consequently not yet numbered. There are two new rooms from Stratum 1, R19 and R20. The function of the former was that of a working space where food processing and the production of ceramic containers took place, the latter represented an open space with several food processing installations.  The new space from Stratum 2, R21, is interpreted as a large open courtyard with a basin which was covered by a roof of twigs and straw supported by wooden poles. It is our belief that the basin has primarily been used in connection with the dyeing of textiles but was later used for the production of clay sling bullets in connection with the defence of the city, just before the city represented by Stratum 2 was destroyed. R15 from Stratum 2, which revealed extraordinary finds, was further excavated. This space seems to have been used for people to gather, to eat and to drink. According to the imported Mycenaean-type pottery, two intact beaked jugs (FS 149) are dated to Late Helladic IIIA2-B1, which corresponds roughly to Late Cypriote IIA2-LC IIC1.  The Mycenaean vessels provide a terminus post quem, and at present a date in the 13th century for Stratum 2 is suggested.

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