Paper abstract

The handmade terracotta animal figurines at the end of the Late Bronze Age and in the Early Iron Age in Crete: chronology, technology, and function

Gesell Geraldine

Although there has been much interest in the handmade terracotta animal figurines from Minoan Peak sanctuaries and other open air cult sites, until recently little was written on the examples from the later Minoan postpalatial period and the Cretan Early Iron Age. Often only a brief mention with perhaps a small photograph and one dimension was considered sufficient. However recent publications on the figurines from the Patsos open air sanctuary by Nina Kourou and Alexandra Karetsou, those from the Piazzale dei Sacelli from Haghia Triada by Anna Lucia D’Agata, and from the settlement at Vrokastro by Barbara Hayden have helped to rectify this situation and offer an opportunity for a new look at the handmade terracotta animal figurines of these periods. This paper will present some underpublished and unpublished figurines from the LM IIIC settlement at Karphi and the nearby Vitzelovrysis spring and sanctuary in use during the Early Iron Age, as well as those from the Plaú tou Kastrou shrine to the south of the Kastro settlement at Kavousi. Some recently excavated figurines from the LM IIIC Vronda settlement at Kavousi will also be included. All will be discussed and compared with figurines from other sites with respect to chronology, technology, and function.

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