The Kelenderis pottery workshop(s): newly identified agents in East Mediterranean maritime exchange networks in the Achaemenid period

Gunnar Lehmann, Yiftah Shalev, Hans Mommsen, David Ben-Shlomo, Małgorzata Daszkiewicz, Gerwulf Schneider, Ayelet Gilboa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

During the Persian (or Achaemenid) period, simply band-painted bowls, plates, jugs, table amphorae and hydriae are documented in the Levant — in particular in the coastal regions — as one of the most common groups of decorated ceramics. Vessels of this style — mostly drinking vessels — were recorded in significant quantities at most coastal sites in southern Turkey, Syria, Israel, Cyprus, and occasionally also in Egypt. The band-painted decoration resembles East Greek styles and initial studies identified these vessels as variations of East Greek ceramics imported to the eastern Mediterranean from Ionian cities. In this study, we examined a large sample of this pottery from the northern and southern Levant, both stylistically and by fabric analysis, applying Neutron Activation Analyses (NAA), Wavelength Dispersive X-Ray Fluorescence (WD-XRF) and petrography. We demonstrate that almost all the vessels of this particular, and popular, style were produced at one site only — Kelenderis, in Cilicia — which during the Persian period distributed its merchandise extensively to large parts of the eastern Mediterranean. The newly identified Mediterranean NAA group was labelled ‘Kelenderis A’ (KelA). The results require a reconsideration of commercial and other Mediterranean interconnections during this period.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-27
Number of pages27
JournalLevant
DOIs
StatePublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Research for this study was funded by Israel Science Foundation Grant no. 570/09 awarded to Gilboa and Lehmann, and no. 237/14 granted to Lehmann, and by PhD scholarships awarded to Shalev by the Research Authority of the University of Haifa and the Nathan Rotenstreich Foundation in Jerusalem. We would like to thank Professor Levent Zoro?lu for his advice and support. Pottery from Al Mina was sampled through the generosity and co-operation of museums and curators in Britain: The British Museum (Alexandra Villing); University College London (Rachael Sparks); and the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford (Jack Green). Marie-Henriette Gates generously allowed us access to material from her excavations at Kinet H?y?k. The following scholars and institutions in Israel granted us permission to sample pottery in their collections: the Israel Antiquities Authority, especially Michael Saban and Deborah Ben-Ami; Nimrod Getzov and Yoav Lerer (Nahariya); Ezra Marcus (Tel ?Akko, Area F, in the framework of a project funded by the White-Levy Program for Archaeological Publications); Avshalom Zemer and the National Maritime Museum at Haifa (Shiqmona); Samuel Wolff (Tel Megadim); Ilan Sharon and S. Rebecca Martin (Dor co-directors); Orit Tzuf (Jaffa); Dan Master and Joshua Walton (Ashkelon). The help of the staff of the research reactor of the Reactor Institute Delft irradiating the samples is thankfully acknowledged. Finally, we acknowledge the contribution of comments by two anonymous reviewers, who indeed helped us to improve the paper.

Funding Information:
Research for this study was funded by Israel Science Foundation Grant no. 570/09 awarded to Gilboa and Lehmann, and no. 237/14 granted to Lehmann, and by PhD scholarships awarded to Shalev by the Research Authority of the University of Haifa and the Nathan Rotenstreich Foundation in Jerusalem. We would like to thank Professor Levent Zoroğlu for his advice and support. Pottery from Al Mina was sampled through the generosity and co-operation of museums and curators in Britain: The British Museum (Alexandra Villing); University College London (Rachael Sparks); and the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford (Jack Green). Marie-Henriette Gates generously allowed us access to material from her excavations at Kinet Höyük. The following scholars and institutions in Israel granted us permission to sample pottery in their collections: the Israel Antiquities Authority, especially Michael Saban and Deborah Ben-Ami; Nimrod Getzov and Yoav Lerer (Nahariya); Ezra Marcus (Tel ʽAkko, Area F, in the framework of a project funded by the White-Levy Program for Archaeological Publications); Avshalom Zemer and the National Maritime Museum at Haifa (Shiqmona); Samuel Wolff (Tel Megadim); Ilan Sharon and S. Rebecca Martin (Dor co-directors); Orit Tzuf (Jaffa); Dan Master and Joshua Walton (Ashkelon). The help of the staff of the research reactor of the Reactor Institute Delft irradiating the samples is thankfully acknowledged. Finally, we acknowledge the contribution of comments by two anonymous reviewers, who indeed helped us to improve the paper.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020, © Council for British Research in the Levant 2020.

Keywords

  • Levantine Archaeology
  • Mediterranean archaeology
  • Neutron Activation Analysis and XRF pottery analysis
  • Persian/Achaemenid period
  • ancient pottery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Archaeology
  • History
  • Archaeology

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