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Aegean Bronze Age Rhyta

Aegean Bronze Age Rhyta

Robert B. Koehl
Volume: 19
Copyright Date: 2006
Published by: INSTAP Academic Press
Pages: 450
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  • Book Info
    Aegean Bronze Age Rhyta
    Book Description:

    Rhyta are among the most appealing yet enigmatic classes of artefacts from the Aegean Bronze Age. They were produced in a wide range of forms and media with a consistently high degree of craftsmanship. This comprehensive study of Bronze Age rhyta from the Aegean builds on nearly a century of discoveries and scholarly contributions, and addresses questions of typology, function, context, and the uses of these vessels. The volume includes a thoroughly illustrated catalogue, an index of sites and the present locations of rhyta.

    eISBN: 978-1-62303-057-5
    Subjects: Archaeology

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. List of Illustrations in the Text
    (pp. ix-x)
  4. List of Tables
    (pp. xi-xii)
  5. List of Figures
    (pp. xiii-xiv)
  6. List of Plates
    (pp. xv-xviii)
  7. Preface
    (pp. xix-xxii)
    Robert B. Koehl
  8. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xxiii-xxvi)
  9. List of Drawing Credits
    (pp. xxvii-xxviii)
  10. List of Photographic Credits
    (pp. xxix-xxx)
  11. Abbreviations and Conventions
    (pp. xxxi-xxxiii)
  12. [Illustration]
    (pp. xxxiv-xxxiv)
  13. Introduction
    (pp. 1-4)

    Every student familiar with the material culture of the Aegean Bronze Age would readily acknowledge that rhyta are among the most appealing, yet enigmatic classes of artifacts. While by no means the most common vessels, they are surely one of the most conspicuous. No other Aegean Bronze Age vessel was made in so wide a range of forms and media, nor with such a consistently high degree of artistry. Indeed, many of the most notable works of Aegean Bronze Age art are rhyta. Several seem very familiar to us, as they frequently appear in general accounts of Aegean art and...

  14. 1 Typology, History, and Development
    (pp. 5-68)

    The Greek word rhyton (τό ῥυτόν) is derived from the verb rhein (ῥειν), meaning “to flow.” In the Classical period, rhyta were usually horn-shaped vessels with a perforated tip, which was at times embellished with a zoomorphic protome (Athenaeus XI.476, 496–497; Lorenz 1935, 643–646; Buschor 1919, 26–33; Hoffmann 1961). Karo (1911) and Buschor (1919, 26–33) were the first scholars to apply the Greek word to a category of Aegean Bronze Age vessels which, like the Classical rhyton, had two openings located, normally, at opposite ends.

    As on the rhyta of the Classical period, the opening at...

  15. 2 Catalog
    (pp. 69-258)

    The organization of the catalog follows the hierarchical order of the typology presented in Chapter 1, which is based on type, class, subclass, and group. The various rims, handles, and bases or tips that constitute the groups are referenced by their type numbers, as outlined in Chapter 1 (see also Tables 1–3). Each new group is introduced with a heading consisting of three numbers: rim type (RT), handle type (HT), and base type (BT). Classes of rhyta that lack a handle have an asterisk (*) instead of a number in the group heading. A “0” in the group heading...

  16. 3 The Mechanical Functions of Aegean Rhyta
    (pp. 259-276)

    This chapter examines how Aegean rhyta were handled, filled, and emptied. The conclusions presented here are drawn from the limited iconographic evidence and three basic archaeological methods: experimentation, observation, and analogy. Each type is discussed separately, and individual discussions are included for some classes and subclasses that illustrate unique or especially useful features that bear on the mechanical functioning of rhyta.

    Experiments were conducted on examples of rhyta from each of the four types. The specimens themselves derive from a variety of sources. Five intact MM III rhyta were discovered at Kommos during the 1979 excavation season while the author...

  17. 4 The Uses of Aegean Rhyta
    (pp. 277-350)

    Whereas the preceding chapter examined the mechanical functions of rhyta, this chapter explores where, why, when, and by whom rhyta were used. In ideal circumstances, answers to these questions would be found in texts and representations in art. However, as the written record of the Aegean Bronze Age remains silent in these matters, and the artistic record is extremely limited, alternative approaches must be applied if one wants answers.

    Under these circumstances, the most productive method of inquiry is one based on the analyses of find contexts, noting particularly the various patterns of distribution (both synchronic and diachronic), that emerge...

  18. 5 Summary and Conclusions
    (pp. 351-370)

    Rhyta constitute their own unique and distinctive category of vessels within the Aegean Bronze Age cultural assemblage from the EM II through to the LM/LH/LC IIIC period. They are the only types of vessels, compared to, for example, cups, jugs, or jars, that occur in such a wide range of shapes, from simple geometric forms, like cones and spheres, to sophisticated figural depictions of humans, animals, and everyday objects. They are also among the few vessels depicted in wall paintings on Crete, the mainland, and the Cyclades (Mantzourani 1995, fig. 1).

    That ancient people living in the Aegean, and not...

  19. Bibliography
    (pp. 371-398)
  20. Concordance I. Catalog and Institutional Inventory Numbers
    (pp. 399-410)
  21. Concordance II. Sites and Catalog Numbers
    (pp. 411-416)
  22. Index
    (pp. 417-424)
  23. Tables
    (pp. None)
  24. Figures
    (pp. None)
  25. Plates
    (pp. None)