The American School of Classical Studies at Athens is pleased to announce the publication of Hesperia 89.2. Topics in this issue include an overview of zooarchaeological evidence from the Neolithic settlement at Tsoungiza, a look at settlement patterns at Priniatikos Pyrgos in East Crete during EM III–MM IA periods, a study on small and miniature vases from Ancient Corinth, and an examination of a statue base in the Athenian Agora.
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Zooarchaeological Evidence for Animal Exploitation at Earlier Neolithic Tsoungiza, Ancient Nemea, by Paul Halstead, details how the animal bones from the earlier Neolithic open-air settlement at Tsoungiza, Ancient Nemea, are dominated by sheep and secondarily by pigs and goats, with cattle scarce and dogs absent. Slaughter ages suggest management of sheep/goat for meat more than milk production. Sparse evidence for wild animals is restricted to foxes and hares. Domesticate carcasses were butchered into large segments, arguably for sharing between social groups larger than single households. In scarcity of game, dominance of sheep, emphasis on meat production, and low-intensity butchering, Halstead finds that Tsoungiza resembles other earlier Neolithic sites in Greece, but preferential slaughter of young adult sheep/goats and selective anatomical treatment are distinctive features, perhaps related to collective commensality.
Faltering Complexity? The Context and Character of Settlement at Priniatikos Pyrgos in Early Minoan III–Middle Minoan IA East Crete, by Barry Molloy, Matěj Pavlacký, Jo Day, Eleni Nodarou, Marina Milić, Sue Bridgford, and David Breeckner, presents the preliminary results of new excavations of Early Minoan III–Middle Minoan IA horizons at Priniatikos Pyrgos in East Crete. It is argued that there is cumulative growth at this central settlement throughout the Early Minoan and earliest Middle Minoan phases that is mirrored in the surrounding settled landscape, but that this changed dramatically during the latter phase with declining prosperity at the site. To explore this, the character of occupation and craft traditions at Priniatikos Pyrgos are evaluated. The authors conclude that the autonomy of this settlement as a local center was interrupted during Middle Minoan IB–II, reflecting a shift in power and governance.
Small and Miniature Vases at Ancient Corinth, by Elizabeth Pemberton, surveys the small and miniature vases from a number of different sanctuaries and burials in ancient Corinth from the later 7th century B.C. on, in order to determine which shapes appear where and when. Their contexts and chronology identify the variation in types, important for understanding cult rituals. Some misconceptions about miniatures are addressed: they were not for poor people or children, nor were they substitutes for their larger prototypes. Their supposed low value is in fact fundamental for their meaning, as several ancient writers suggest. Because they are inexpensive, offered anonymously, and nonfunctioning as vases, the author concludes that they are special—gifts for the gods.
A Monumental Stepped Statue Base in the Athenian Agora, by Elizabeth P. Baltes, examines a prominent but overlooked feature of the landscape of the Athenian Agora: a monumental stepped base located at the north corner of the east wall of the Odeion. Archaeological evidence suggests that this monument was one of such importance that the construction of the Odeion accommodated the existing monument rather than displacing it. By integrating archaeological and literary evidence and leveraging 3D-modeling techniques, this article suggests that the stepped base is a strong candidate for the Tyrannicides monument. The permanence of this monument in the landscape helps challenge the persistent narrative of aggressive Romanization within the Agora.
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