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PHILISTOR: Studies in Honor of Costis Davaras

Eleni Mantzourani
Philip P. Betancourt
Volume: 36
Copyright Date: 2012
Published by: INSTAP Academic Press
Pages: 282
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  • Book Info
    Book Description:

    Contributions by 37 scholars are brought together here to create a volume in honor of the long and fruitful career of Costis Davaras, former Ephor of Crete and Professor Emeritus of Minoan Archaeology at the University of Athens. Articles pertain to Bronze Age Crete and include mortuary studies, experimental archaeology, numerous artifactual studies, and discussions on the greater Minoan civilization.

    eISBN: 978-1-62303-030-8
    Subjects: Archaeology, History, Art & Art History

Table of Contents

  1. List of Tables in the Text
    (pp. xi-xii)
  2. List of Figures in the Text
    (pp. xiii-xx)
  3. Biography of Costis Davaras
    (pp. xxi-xxiv)
    Eleni Mantzourani
  4. Bibliography of Costis Davaras
    (pp. xxv-xxx)
  5. List of Abbreviations
    (pp. xxxi-xxxii)
  6. CHAPTER 1 The Frying Pans from Hagia Photia
    (pp. 1-6)
    Philip P. Betancourt

    Twelve examples of the Cycladic vessel called the frying pan come from the large cemetery at Hagia Photia Siteias.* Because this is an extremely large assemblage of examples from a single site, the selection provides important evidence for an understanding of this enigmatic shape. As everyone who has studied the vessel in the past has recognized, one of the few things about the frying pan upon which all can agree is that it was never used for frying (Coleman 1985, 203).

    The cemetery of Hagia Photia was excavated by Davaras beginning in 1971 (for preliminary reports, see Davaras 1971a, 1971b,...

  7. CHAPTER 2 The Genesis of the Early Minoan Tholos Tomb
    (pp. 7-14)
    Keith Branigan

    It must be said at the outset that research and excavations over the last forty years have failed to produce any definitive evidence that allows us to conclusively identify where, when, and how the first Minoan tholoi came into existence.* Nor is any future excavation likely to yield such conclusive evidence. This paper is unashamedly speculative. After briefly reviewing the debate over whether the tholoi were an imported or indigenous development, I discuss where and when the first tholoi appeared. Then I assess the extent to which the tholos tombs represent architectural and conceptual innovation and, in this way, seek...

  8. CHAPTER 3 Harvesting an Old Rattle: The Bronze Sistrum from the “Royal” Villa at Hagia Triada
    (pp. 15-24)
    Thomas M. Brogan

    The discovery of the “Harvester Vase” at Hagia Triada in 1902 introduced scholars to one of the most treasured images from Bronze Age Crete.* This ritual stone vessel carries a lively carving in low relief that depicts a group of 27 men (Forsdyke 1954; Koehl 2006, 90–91, no. 110; Blakolmer 2007, fig. 15). Two figures of central importance are distinguished by their positions on opposite sides of the vase, clearly separated from the larger group of youths. The first is a bearded, and presumably older, man who wears a thick cloak and is identified as the leader of the...

  9. CHAPTER 4 Γαία περίρρυτος: Some Thoughts on “Neo-Minoan” Mythology
    (pp. 25-34)
    Christos G. Doumas

    In analyzing archaeological data the examination of ancient myths is a useful tool, particularly in regions with a rich mythological and literary tradition, since the historical circumstances represented by these material remains may have been reflected, in one way or another, in myth (Chadwick 1976, 116).* What is unorthodox and unscientific is to start an archaeological investigation based on information from myths and legends, for this information is bound to lead to assumptions that, if considered as facts, may distort the evidence and result in misinterpretations of the data (Rutkowski 1971, 6; Knapp 1992, 337). The archaeological record, consisting as...

  10. CHAPTER 5 The Presence of Pumice in Late Minoan IIIB Levels at Sissi, Crete
    (pp. 35-42)
    Florence Gaignerot-Driessen and Jan Driessen

    The honoree, Costis Davaras, has always expressed a deep interest in the natural environment and beauty of the island of Crete, which, for many decades, he has explored, excavated, and protected. Many of his excavations took place on isolated mountain peaks, in deep caves, near rivers and beaches, and he was fascinated by the use the Minoans made of their habitat, sometimes through the most discrete interventions.* Harmony between man and his environment was a “fil rouge” throughout his distinguished career. We take the opportunity of this Festschrift to combine two aspects dear to his heart: a site he helped...

  11. CHAPTER 6 The Kavousi Goddesses with Up-raised Hands: New Information on Technology
    (pp. 43-50)
    Geraldine C. Gesell

    I have chosen to write on a topic dealing with Minoan religion to honor Costis Davaras because he was always interested in my work on the subject and wrote himself on this topic among many other facets of Minoan archaeology. The article itself is particularly appropriate, because without his support as Ephor of the 24th Ephorate at the beginning of the Kavousi Project, the goddesses discussed here might never have been discovered. This article is my thanks to him.

    Before I discuss the Goddess with Up-raised Hands, I would like to take this opportunity to explain why I continue to...

  12. CHAPTER 7 An Early Minoan I Long Dagger and Razor from Kalo Chorio, East Crete
    (pp. 51-58)
    Donald C. Haggis

    Excavations conducted in 1993 at Kalo Chorio recovered a copper long dagger and a razor fragment from Early Minoan (EM) I occupation levels in the Kourinos terrace (Haggis 1996). While the excavation sample was small, consisting of a single test trench, the finds are significant because they represent the only documented examples of these types of blades from unequivocally domestic contexts of secure EM I date on the island. This contribution presents the objects as part of the domestic assemblage from the site and within a broader discussion of the consumption of metals in EM I Crete.

    Of the 161...

  13. CHAPTER 8 “Firebars” and Other Ceramics of Problematic Function from Priniatikos Pyrgos
    (pp. 59-64)
    Barbara J. Hayden

    The discovery of a large, long piece of fired initially clay described as a “tripod leg” was made at the harbor settlement of Priniatikos Pyrgos during intensive survey of the site (Fig. 8.1; Kalpaxis et al. 2006, 163, fig. 10:e, f, pl. 7:d; Hayden et al. 2007, 96), and other similar objects, also called “firebars” or “bricks” (for this term, see Todd 1990, 68–70; Todd, Hadjicosti, and Herscher 1991, 59–60), were seen on the surface of the site in other years. These are always broken at the widest end, taper to a somewhat pointed base, and are usually...

  14. CHAPTER 9 A Tomb from Gonies Pediados: The End of Final Neolithic IV Merges with the Dawn of the Early Bronze Age)
    (pp. 65-80)
    Athanasia Kanta

    My colleague and dear friend of over thirty years, Professor Costis Davaras, is one of the now rare breed of archaeologists whose vast knowledge spans ancient and modern Greek language and literature, as well as prehistoric and classical archaeology. In honor of his work at Hagia Photia, one of the most important Early Bronze Age sites in Crete, I prepared this paper whose investigative aspect I enjoyed considerably. May he and Dione continue to prosper for the joy of their friends.*

    A tomb was discovered during work for the foundation of a house in the village of Gonies Pediados (Figs....

  15. CHAPTER 10 Two Stone Kernoi from the Juktas Peak Sanctuary
    (pp. 81-96)
    Alexandra Karetsou

    The purpose of this paper is to present two stone kernoi, in secondary use, from the altar and the Protopalatial deposit of Terrace I, in the open area of the peak sanctuary on Mt. Juktas (Figs 10.1–10.6).* This type of find possibly sheds light on an issue discussed for several decades. What were stone kernoi used for? Were they intended for divine or secular games, or for cult practice?

    The term “kernos” has been used to describe several different types of object. Here I am referring to kernoi of the libation-table type, often called “block vases” since they are...

  16. CHAPTER 11 A New Idol of Cycladic Type from Hagia Triada
    (pp. 97-104)
    Vincenzo La Rosa

    A few years ago, thanks to Costis, I added the word χορτοφάγος to my poor Greek lexicon. We had known each other for a long time: he as a young inspector, and me as a young student in D. Levi’s entourage; both timid, taciturn, but with a mutual esteem and sympathy. He did not much frequent Herakleion, our necessary point of reference, and once he had moved to Hagios Nikolaos, and then to Athens, it became even more difficult to meet. We remained, therefore, friends at a distance, happy to meet at the Cretological congresses and on the various boats...

  17. CHAPTER 12 Sexuality or Fertility Symbol? The Bronze Figurine from Makrygialos
    (pp. 105-112)
    Eleni Mantzourani

    The well-known Neopalatial building at Makrygialos in East Crete (Fig. 12.1) was excavated in two field seasons, 1972 and 1977, by Costis Davaras, emeritus Professor of the University of Athens.* This rescue excavation unearthed a large edifice, dated by the ceramic sequence to the Late Minoan (LM) IB period (Davaras 1997; Mantzourani 2011). Among the large quantity of various types of material including pottery and miscellaneous artifacts made of clay, metal, and stone, there was a bronze figurine—the only figurine, either in clay or metal—uncovered at the site.

    This paper attempts to establish the significance of this particular...

  18. CHAPTER 13 A Story of Lions: Palatial Ideology in Egypt, Knossos, and Mycenae
    (pp. 113-118)
    Nanno Marinatos

    In the excavations of Manfred Bietak at Tell el-Dabʿa, hundreds of fragments of Minoan paintings came to light, all dating to the 18th Dynasty, the reign of Tuthmosis III (Bietak 1996a; Bietak, Marinatos, and Palyvou 2007). The fragments originally decorated a palace in sector H/I, which has been designated “Palace F” by the excavator. They were not in their original context, however, but had been torn from the walls and thrown in a dump in one of the gardens of the palace.

    It has taken a long time and much labor to reconstruct coherent scenes out of the disjointed fragments,...

  19. CHAPTER 14 Earth and Fire: Cretan Potting Traditions and Replicating Minoan Cooking Fabrics
    (pp. 119-132)
    Jennifer Moody, Jerolyn E. Morrison and Harriet Lewis Robinson

    The impressive breadth of Costis Davaras’s research, from pottery production to spiritual well-being, connects static archaeological objects with possible lifestyles, improving our vision of how people might once have lived on Crete (Davaras 1973a, 1973b, 1980). Our replication experiments of Minoan pottery contribute to this dynamic tradition by re-creating possible real-life situations for Bronze Age Crete and providing insights into the complex choices made by Cretan potters and consumers over time.

    In the stunningly varied Cretan landscape, the resources that are needed to produce pottery—clay, temper, water, and fuel—appear to be widely available (Rackham and Moody 1996). Macroscopic...

  20. CHAPTER 15 A Terracotta Foot Model from the Syme Sanctuary, Crete
    (pp. 133-138)
    Polymnia Muhly

    It is a more than ordinary pleasure to publish here a terracotta foot model from the Syme sanctuary in honor of Costis Davaras, a former classmate and longtime friend, who has himself contributed to the study of related material from Crete (Davaras 1980).

    Three-dimensional representations of feet of various materials are well known from Minoan contexts, but they do not constitute a coherent assemblage either contextually or chronologically. The best known are the amulets/seals, which were made of soft stone as well as other materials, including clay (Branigan 1970; Pini 1972). They ordinarily represent a foot, often less than 2...

  21. CHAPTER 16 East Cretan Peak Sanctuaries Revisited
    (pp. 139-154)
    Krzysztof Nowicki

    Costis Davaras’s rescue excavations at East Cretan peak sanctuaries (Davaras 1964, 1971a, 1971b, 1972) took place in the 1960s and early 1970s during a time when illegal digging had reached a dangerous point. Almost every known site of this type (except Petsophas) was already destroyed or was severely threatened, and few had ever been properly documented. These excavations were partly connected with Paul Faure’s field research in East Crete, which was in turn helpfully guided by Emmanouil Fygetakis (Faure 1963; 1965; 1967; Davaras 1964, 442; 1972, 652). The finds from Davaras’s excavations were secured and stored in museums, and they...

  22. CHAPTER 17 An Early Minoan Boat Model from Kephala Petras, Siteia
    (pp. 155-160)
    Yiannis Papadatos

    A small clay model (Figs. 17.1, 17.2) of what seems to be a boat was found during recent excavations at the settlement of Kephala Petras, near Siteia. The site has two major phases of occupation: the earlier dates to the very end of the Final Neolithic (FN), the FN IV phase, and the later dates to the very beginning of the Early Bronze Age (EBA), Early Minoan (EM) IA (Papadatos 2008; Papadatos et al., forthcoming). The boat model was found on the bedrock in an open area immediately outside the southwestern corner of the EM IA building complex (Papadatos 2008,...

  23. CHAPTER 18 New Evidence on the Origin of the Late Minoan III Chest-shaped Larnax
    (pp. 161-168)
    Lefteris Platon

    The question of origin of the clay chest-shaped sarcophagi or larnakes of the Late Minoan (LM) III period was a subject of early interest to scholars (Rutkowski 1968, 219–220 nn. 4–6, with earlier bibliography; a good, quite recent discussion is included in Evangelou 2009). Initially, the scarcity of burial places on LM I Crete led some scholars to dissociate the reappearance in the island of clay larnakes from an old tradition where individuality was sought for some burials through the use of clay containers (Branigan 1970, 177; Muhly 1996, 210). Arthur Evans first looked for the origins of...

  24. CHAPTER 19 God Save Our Homes: The Case of the Horns of Consecration from Galatas
    (pp. 169-176)
    Giorgos Rethemiotakis

    Professor C. Davaras, former Epimeletes and Ephor of Antiquities in the Archaeological Service, conducted many rescue excavations in remote areas all over Crete in times when most Cretan sites were being plundered and vandalized by clandestine excavators. The result of his intensive rescue work was the salvation of many significant artifacts along with invaluable information that otherwise would have been lost forever.

    In one of the many urgent excavations at the significant peak sanctuary of Petsophas above Palaikastro he found, among a wealth of important offerings, a plaster model of horns of consecration, which he later published in detail (Davaras...

  25. CHAPTER 20 The Hypostyle Crypt (Quartier Kappa) and the Large Court, Malia: An Athletic Center?
    (pp. 177-186)
    Martin Schmid

    The Hypostyle Crypt, Building Ka, and the large court adjoining them, which their excavator Henri van Effenterre called an “agora” (van Effenterre and van Effenterre 1969), were built in the Protopalatial period, contemporary with structures such as the Sanctuary of the Horns, the Middle Minoan (MM) II Sanctuary, Quartier Mu, and the “Dessenne” storerooms southwest of the palace.*

    Published by Marie-Claire Amouretti (Amouretti 1970), the Hypostyle Crypt (Figs. 20.1–20.3) is roughly rectangular, 43 m long, and covers an area measuring approximately 840 m² including walls—an area equivalent to Building A of Quartier Mu. This imposing edifice is situated...

  26. CHAPTER 21 Mochlos Boats
    (pp. 187-200)
    Jeffrey S. Soles

    Provided with one of the best harbors on the north coast of Crete and situated as it was on a busy trading route where foreign, as well as Minoan ships, stopped to trade and take on provisions, Mochlos hosted a huge number of different boats over the centuries, not to mention its own boats that were always pulled ashore on its sandy tombolo or harbored in its lea.* Much of daily life at Mochlos revolved around boats, which were the life blood of the community, bringing copper and tin from the east, exporting finished products, and guaranteeing the prosperity of...

  27. CHAPTER 22 The “Vrysinas Ephebe”: The Lower Torso of a Clay Figurine in Contrapposto
    (pp. 201-212)
    Dimitris Sphakianakis

    The clay human figurine assemblage from Costis Davaras’s 1972–1973 excavation at the Minoan “peak sanctuary” of Vrysinas produced 2,736 fragments, 713 of which are parts of heads (Davaras 1973, 1974).* The total is believed to number at least 600 partially preserved and intact figurines of various types, the vast majority of which are dated to the palatial periods (Protopalatial and Neopalatial), with very few examples from later periods. Among these abundant fragments one stands out: the separate lower torso of a standing male figurine, which has come to be called the “Vrysinas Ephebe” (Fig. 22.1). Its notable features include...

  28. CHAPTER 23 Kampos Group Pottery from the Prepalatial Cemetery of Petras, Siteia
    (pp. 213-222)
    Metaxia Tsipopoulou

    The excavation of the Minoan urban settlement and the palace of Petras (1985–2000) is adequately known among the scholarly community of Aegean archaeologists (Tsipopoulou 1990; 2002; 2007b, with further bibliography). It is a very happy chance that the unplundered Prepalatial cemetery consisting of house tombs was located at the beginning of the 21st century. Its excavation started, conducted in a still non-expropriated field, with limited funding in 2004 and was interrupted in 2006 (Tsipopoulou, in press). Investigation of the cemetery continued in 2009–2011, financed by the Institute for Aegean Prehistory (INSTAP).

    The Prepalatial Early Minoan (EM) I–Middle...

  29. CHAPTER 24 Minoan Bee Smokers: An Experimental Approach
    (pp. 223-232)
    Loeta Tyree, Harriet Lewis Robinson and Paraskevi Stamataki

    To honor Costis Davaras in celebration of his distinguished career, the authors have turned to Davaras’s 1989 article on a Minoan beekeeping vessel found at Zakros (Davaras 1989). In addition to the article on this Zakros vessel, Davaras has written more broadly on bees and honey (Davaras 1984, 1992) as well as on a Linear B ideogram that he suggests represents a horizontal beehive (Davaras 1986, 42–43).

    The authors’ interest in the Zakros bee-smoker vessel came about because of several coarse perforated sherds, with signs of foot and handle attachments, found during the course of the study of the...

  30. CHAPTER 25 Headless, Armless but Sexuated Bodies: On Some Particular Figurines from the Peak Sanctuary of Vrysinas, near Rethymnon, Crete
    (pp. 233-238)
    Iris Tzachili

    Perhaps the most remarkable feature of the archaeological record from the Peak Sanctuary at Vrysinas (Rethymnon) is the huge numbers of figurines found there (the sanctuary was first published in Davaras 1974; see also Faure 1963, 504–508; Rutkowski 1988, 89–90; Tzachili 2011, 107–136).* This is despite the fact that the ancient deposits are very close to the surface and have been trampled by animals and humans for centuries and subject to the natural elements, particularly erosion. The huge numbers are even more striking in light of the illegal excavations that have taken place over several decades until...

  31. CHAPTER 26 Armenoi: The Late Minoan III Necropolis and the Town
    (pp. 239-246)
    Yannis Tzedakis and Holley Martlew

    In Late Minoan (LM) IIIA the Minoans began to build a cemetery that is located approximately 9 km south of the modern town of Rethymnon on the main north–south road in the prefecture; the cemetery continued in use until LM IIIB late (Tzedakis 1992).* This cemetery grew to such proportions—232 chamber tombs excavated to date with a minimum number of 1,000 skeletons—and of such wealth—32 decorated clay larnakes; more than 800 fine decorated vases from six different workshops; 300 bronzes; and individual artifacts such as a boar’s tooth helmet, a unique woven reed basket decorated with...

  32. CHAPTER 27 The Neopalatial “Farmhouse” at Kephali Lazana, Chondros Viannou, Re-examined
    (pp. 247-254)
    Giorgos Vavouranakis

    In 1960, Nikolaos Platon excavated an architectural complex at the site of Kephali Lazana, located outside the village of Chondros Viannou (Platon 1960).* He interpreted the finds as the remains of a farmhouse, dated to the Middle Minoan (MM) IIIB–Late Minoan (LM) IA period after the dark-on-light pottery found at the site. In 2004, Eleni Mantzourani, the author, and Chrysanthos Kanellopoulos conducted new fieldwork at the site, which was part of a research project that examined several Neopalatial buildings in East Crete, namely Achladia, Epano Zakros, Klimataria, Zou, Prophetes Elias Praisou, Kephali Lazana, Rousses, Makrygialos, and Azokeramos. The project...

  33. CHAPTER 28 The Apogee of Minoan Civilization: The Final Neopalatial Period
    (pp. 255-272)
    Peter M. Warren

    In recent years, widely different interpretations of the final Minoan palatial stage have been put forward.* Indeed two words in the previous sentence would themselves be challenged by some, albeit unnecessarily in the writer’s view. For me, “Minoan” remains a fully usable term if taken simply as shorthand for Bronze Age Cretan people or culture before the Mycenaean political takeover. The takeover itself has recently been rejected by Jan Driessen and Charlotte Langohr (2007), who see the Late Minoan (LM) II–IIIA period as still essentially Minoan, albeit with Mycenaean elements, including the use of the Greek language by the...

  34. CHAPTER 29 An Overview of Secondary State Formation on Crete: The Mirabello Region during the Bronze Age
    (pp. 273-286)
    L. Vance Watrous

    The focus of this paper is the sociopolitical development of the Mirabello region in East Crete during the Bronze Age.* First given as a lecture at the INSTAP Study Center for East Crete in June 2008, this paper retains much of its original form.

    The Mirabello region consists of five river valleys that run down from the mountains to the coast and empty into the Mirabello Bay—at Hagios Niko laos, at Ammoudara, at Istron, at Pacheia Ammos, and at Tholos near Kavousi. We might add a sixth point, at Mochlos, since Mochlos sits on the shore of its own...