Libations and the Use of Mycenaean Conical Rhyta in Ritual Practice in the Late Cypriot IIA-IIIA Periods
Alexandra Markou Στο R. Maguire & J. Chick (eds) 2016. Approaching Cyprus. Proceedings of the Post-Graduate Conference of Cypriot Archaeology (PoCA) held at the University of East Anglia, Norwich, 1st-3rd November 2013, Newcastle upon Tyne: 22-39.
The end of the Late Bronze Age in Cyprus is a time of multiple social and economic transformations. This period is often characterized by substantial culture contact due to developments in seafaring as well as intensification of the copper industry, significant trade with the Aegean, and a reworking of ritual spaces. It is well established that at this point in Cypriot history, the island was subject to influences from the Aegean and the Levant. One area of research, which has been less examined, is how this amalgam of people, ideas, and contact between Cyprus and the Aegean impacted the ritual sphere and cult practices of Late Cypriot (LC) society. The study of ritual is often overlooked in archaeological studies that attempt to map out cultural exchanges and identity, specifically in the prehistoric record. The main issue arises from the fact that material culture, such as pottery and architecture, is generally used as the sole marker of these transmissions between cultures. However, piecing together past rituals is also a way to examine how societies functioned, how individuals viewed themselves, how they self-identified both on a small scale and within the larger group, as well as what they deemed socially important.