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Title: Mortuary architecture, depositional behaviour and social change in the Tholos cemeteries of south-central Crete, 3000-1700 BC
Author: Michelaki, Flora
ISNI:       0000 0004 7659 7843
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2018
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The bulk of the evidence for the Pre- and early Protopalatial societies of Crete comes from cemetery sites, and particularly from the monumental round (tholos) tomb cemeteries of south-central Crete, mostly excavated early in the 20th century, or salvaged after looting from the 1950s to 1980s. The tombs, often occurring in pairs and within more complex cemeteries (including rectangular buildings and enclosed and paved areas), have been particularly intensively investigated in the western Mesara plain and the Asterousia mountains immediately to the south. For over a millennium, this was the type of tomb principally used for burial throughout this region, only rarely occurring elsewhere on the island. Along with localised patterns in artefacts styles, increasingly recognised, this mortuary tradition serves to define a common cultural area, which can be analysed as a coherent microcosm, providing a detailed perspective on social and political transformations during the period of the development of the first complex societies in Crete, represented by the palace states of the Middle Bronze Age. The aim of this research is to examine the architectural and depositional complexity of the best documented tholos cemeteries in south-central Crete during the Prepalatial and Protopalatial periods and to explore what they can tell us about broader social behaviour, its variations between communities and transformations through time, in this period spanning the development of the Minoan states. This project involves a commitment to the study of basic archaeological data, both unpublished and published, from a number of sites held in the Archaeological Museum and the Ephorate of Antiquities of Heraklion. The systematic documentation and analysis of the preserved material culture along with the surviving architectural remains allow the identification of patterns and local variations which contribute to a more nuanced understanding of these cemeteries and the societies that constructed and used them.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available