Pottery of the 13th to 11th centuries BCE on Cyprus and the connections between the Aegean and Cyprus


Handmade cooking pot of Cypriot type from Énkomi (© R. Jung)
Wheel-thrown cooking pot of Mycenaean type from Maa-Paläókastro (© R. Jung)

The study of pottery of the three settlements of Enkomi in eastern, Pyla-Kokkinókremos in southern and Maa-Palaiokastro in western Cyprus provides new data to the study of the island’s external contacts at the end of the Bronze Age. The project began in 2008 at the German Archaeological Institute at Athens as part of a research fellowship and continued in the years 2009 and 2010 at the University of Salzburg. It was funded by the Leventis Foundation and the Institute for Aegean Prehistory (INSTAP) in Philadelphia, USA.

The ceramic material comprises unpainted and painted handmade pottery of Cypriot type as well as imported and locally produced Mycenaean pottery as well as products imitating Mycenaean wares. It has been extensively documented in terms of its typological and technological characteristics (wares) and statistically evaluated. As a key result, radical changes in the entire ceramic repertoire have been observed in various Cypriot settlements at the turn from Late Cypriot IIC to IIIA, both in the fine and coarse wares, but particularly striking in the cooking vessels. The traditional handmade cooking pottery at Énkomi, for instance, was completely replaced by wheel-thrown cooking pottery of entirely different form and function, which belong to the types of vessels used in Mycenaean Greece at the time.

The results of this project provide important arguments to support the idea that immigrant groups of persons from Mycenaean Greece triggered at least part of the historical changes in Cyprus in the 12th century BCE. A chemical analysis of samples from all three investigated settlements using neutron activation analysis is in planning; this will be followed by a further, final publication.

Publications

Publikationen

  • A. Jacobs, B. Borgers, Ch. Makarona, V. Renson, H. Mommsen, P. Fragnoli, R. Jung, Archaeometric Studies on Plain Ware Composition and Manufacturing Techniques. In: S. Hadjisavvas, Alassa. Excavations at the Late Bronze Age Sites of Pano Mantilaris and Paliotaverna 1984–2000 (Lefkosia 2017) 539–558.
  • R. Jung (with a contribution by H. Mommsen), Cooking Vessels from Late Bronze Age Cyprus: Local Traditions, Western and Eastern Innovations, in: J. Hruby, D. Trusty (eds), From Cooking Vessels to Cultural Practices in the Late Bronze Age Aegean (Oxford 2017) 127–145.
  • R. Jung, Can We Say, What’s behind all those Sherds? Ceramic Innovations in the Eastern Mediterranean at the End of the Second Millennium. In: J. Maran, Ph. W. Stockhammer (Hrsg.), Materiality and Social Practice. Transformative Capacities of Intercultural Encounters, Oxford 2012, 104–120.
  • R. Jung, Innovative Cooks and New Dishes: Cypriot pottery in the 13th and 12th centuries BCE and its historical interpretation. In: V. Karageorghis, O. Kouka (Hrsg.), On Cooking Pots, Drinking Cups, Loomweights and Ethnicity in Bronze Age Cyprus and Neighbouring Regions. An International Archaeological Symposium held in Nicosia, November 6th–7th 2010, Nikosia 2011, 57–85.
  • R. Jung, Tafeln in Enkomi vom 13. bis zum 12. Jh. v.u.Z.: Neue Töpfe auf dem Tisch oder neue Gäste am Tisch? In: F. Blakolmer, G. Nightingale, C. Reinholdt, J. Weilhartner (Hrsg.), Akten der Tagung „Österreichische Forschungen zur Ägäischen Bronzezeit 2009“ vom 6. bis 7. März 2009 an der Universität Salzburg , Wien 2011, 173–196.
  • R. Jung, Pirates of the Aegean. Italy – East Aegean – Cyprus at the End of the Second Millennium BCE. In: V. Karageorghis, O. Kouka (Hrsg.), Cyprus and the East Aegean: Intercultural Contacts from 3000 to 500 BC. An International Archaeological Symposium held at Pythagoreion, Samos, October 17th–18th, 2008, Nikosia 2009, 72–93.