Which Way Forward? On the Directionality of Minoan/Cycladic Ships
Shelley Wachsmann Skyllis 11:2 (2011): 8-18.
Περίληψη (στα Αγγλικά)
The Minoans are rightly noted for their seafaring abilities. Their ships turned the Mediterranean Sea for them into a highway over which they interacted with far-flung contemporaneous cultures. To date, not a single Minoan/Cycladic hull has been found, however. Our knowledge of these vessels is based almost exclusively on contemporaneous ship iconography. For decades after Sir Arthur Evans resurrected the Minoan culture at Knossos, little was known about their watercraft. A large corpus of Minoan/Cycladic ship representations existed, but most of the information derived from engravings on tiny seals and sealings along with a few poorly-made ship models, which could only give a general understanding of the vessels. Then, in 1972 Spyridon Marinatos on Thera began uncovering the site of Akrotiri, an entire settlement buried by volcanic ash at the end of the 17” century BC. Thera supplies the most detailed, polychromatic depictions of Minoan/Cycladic ships available and also solves a longstanding riddle regarding Early Cycladic longships: Which end was the bow and which the stern? This paper is an overview of the evidence for the directionality of Early Cycladic longships from the specific concern of evaluating the iconographic evidence in its cultural continuum.
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