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Title: Towards the Greek colonisation : the interaction between Greece and Italy from the end of the Bronze Age to the Iron Age
Author: Saltini Semerari , Giulia
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2010
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This thesis concerns the development of long-distance connections between Italy and Greece from the fall of the Greek Mycenaean palaces to the foundation of the earliest colonies in Italy (ca. 12th to 7th centuries BC). I focus on four case studies - two each in Italy (Basilicata and Salento) and Greece (Achaea and Laconia) - in order to understand the socioeconomic contexts that enabled long distance contacts to develop and how local changes affected them through time. My hypothesis is that local, hierarchical changes in Italian and Greek communities had a direct effect on the intensity of Italian-Greek exchange and reciprocal entanglement. I demonstrate that this was indeed the case, and show that contacts during the early stages of the Early Iron Age were less intensive than the previous and subsequent periods because both areas experienced a reduction in social competition. The principal focus of exchange shifted to metals (in the form of raw materials, finished objects and specialised technological and stylistic knowledge) because control over metal exchange and production allowed local leaders to maintain their status. This period was one of stability and gradual growth that by the end of the Early Iron Age had put in motion a positive feedback loop whereby demographic and economic growth sparked renewed social competition which, in turn, fuelled the search for new resources. Locally, this resulted in increased social stratification and the establishment of a powerful elite with ample access to exotic commodities. It also prompted a change in landscape use with settlement expansion, reorganisation and new foundations. On a larger scale, a network of entangled, Mediterranean-wide exchanges was established. Perhaps the most significant consequence of this long-term, macroscopic process was the eventual arrival of Greek settlers to southern Italy. Their success in establishing settlements in an already well-developed territory is due largely to their role as providers of commodities to the local elite.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available