In search of lost centuries: Hand-made pottery in Cyprus between Rome and the Crusaders

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In the late 7th century, Cyprus, like much of the Aegean and eastern Mediterra- nean, entered a period for which there is very little archaeological evidence, but unlike other areas, it did not emerge from this ‘dark age’ in the 10th century, but only in the late 12th century. Local material culture of the period is barely known, imports are few, and settlement-remains hardly recognised. A couple of decades ago a corpus of handmade pottery that made its first appearance in the 7th century was recognised as a possible key to the local material culture of the period, and in particular to identifying rural sites. This corpus was only known from a few sites of the first century or so of the gap period, and from its very end. The typology of these two points in time was sketchy, the development from one to the other unknown. This paper presents the results of a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship, that concentrated on this corpus. The primary aim of the project was to identify development for the handmade pottery, that will render it a useful study tool for the gap period. But given the paucity of evidence, and the extended gap period, it was necessary to develop a methodology that will make it possi- ble to establish chronological typology relying principally on internal evidence, a methodology that we hope could be applied in comparable situations elsewhere.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)447-486
Number of pages40
JournalHEROM: Journal on Hellenistic and Roman Material Culture
Publication statusPublished - 2020


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