Gournes, Pediada: A Minoan Cemetery in Crete

· PREHISTORY MONOGRAPHS Book 63 · INSTAP Academic Press (Institute for Aegean Prehistory)

About this ebook

The results of the excavation of an Early Bronze Age cemetery—including 37 tombs and an associated rectangular Minoan building—at Gournes in north-central Crete revealed strong relations with the Cyclades during the time of the Kampos Cultural Group, as exemplified by the distinctive style of pottery and other types of burial objects such as obsidian pieces and metal items. The discussion of burial practices at Gournes involves both the significance of several features of the funerary architecture and the consideration of the character and deposition of offerings in the tombs. The burial architecture and artifacts are profusely illustrated and tables of data are presented. The cemetery is compared with other Early Bronze Age sites within and outside Crete to investigate links among Prepalatial funerary practices and also to look into settlement sites that display similar characteristics that may reveal possible intercultural relations in the Aegean. Their interconnections confirm the existence, since the Early Minoan I period, of a dense social network including the Cycladic islands and contacts with distant areas of Crete. The Minoan building was used from Early Minoan III to Late Minoan IA, and its ritual character in association with the funerary context suggests that it was originally constructed as a house tomb and was reused later as a support building for rituals after the abandonment of the Early Minoan IB cemetery.

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