Friday 24 March 2006

Birgitta Hallager
Danish Institut at Athens

Domestic shrines in LM IIIA:2-C Crete - Fact or Fiction?
Over the last few years, our knowledge of LM IIIA:2 to LM IIIC public shrines in Crete has greatly increased. With the presentations of the three newly found shrines at Kavousi/Vronda, Halasmenos and Kephala Vasiliki, we are now in a somewhat better position to study both the permanent fixtures in the shrines and the movable objects. Thus, we can conclude that snake tubes, once thought to belong to the permanent objects in public shrines, were occasionally removed to other rooms within the settlement. This will affect the identification of some shrines which have been claimed to be domestic.
Domestic shrines during the same period are less well-known. In some settlements, one or two have been identified, in others none. Karphi is exceptional. Here it has been argued that there are two major town sanctuaries and six shrines. If each family have had a domestic shrine why do we not find them in all the LM III houses? And more important how can we identify a domestic shrine? In the literature we find ten clear examples of domestic shrines in the following six settlements: Karphi, Katsamba, Kephala Khondrou, Knossos, Kommos and Palaikastro. The contents of these shrines will be discussed as well as the possible function of the figurines and the hut-models which, in some cases, have been pivotal in the identification of the domestic shrine.


Next Seminar

Friday 12 May 18.30

M. Marthari
Raos on Thera...