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The Kastri Group : Evidence from Korfari ton Amygdalion (Panormos) Naxos, Daskalio Keros and Akrotiri Thera

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The Kastri Group : Evidence from Korfari ton Amygdalion (Panormos) Naxos, Daskalio Keros and Akrotiri Thera
  149The ‘Kastri Group’ Chapter 16 The ‘Kastri Group’: Evidence from Korfari ton Amygdalion (Panormos) Naxos, Dhaskalio Keros and Akrotiri Thera population into the Cyclades, srcinating from Asia Minor (Caskey 1986, 25) or the northeastern Aegean (Doumas 1988, 27–8). Origin, distribution and date The Kastri Group is not a homogeneous or consist-ent ceramic group, as there are no real links between the srcins, distributions and dates of its individual elements. Study of the Group’s typological evolution demonstrates that shapes of Asia Minor srcin, such as the depas amphikypellon, the S-prole jug with cutaway spout, and the tankard, coexist with shapes of general Aegean derivation, like the beaked jug with straight rim, the spherical incised pyxis or the long- spouted jar (teapot), and with shapes of specically Cycladic srcin, such as the duck vase (Angelopou-lou 2003, 159–68). Furthermore, the shapes of Asia Minor srcin have their roots in dierent areas. For example, the depas 1  and the jug with cutaway spout are common in northwest Asia Minor and belong to the poery tradition of Troy (Blegen et al.  1950, B18, 68, 232–3, sherd I-129, g. 245, no. 24, sherd I-134, g. 243, no. 1, sherd I-157, g. 245, no. 25, nos. 36.1153, 35.503, 35.483 g. 387, pl. 370a; 1951, B18, 128–9, g. 59a, 71, 154a nos. 33.189, 36.709, gs. 161, 185, B20, 27–8, gs. 59a, 154a, nos. 33.179, 33.154, 33.152, gs. 60, 72, no. 32.70, g. 242, sherd F. 199, g. 245, no. 3, sherd F. 190, g. 248, no. 17). The tankard shares features with examples from Karatas-Semayük (Mellink 1986, 146; Sotirakopoulou 1997, 532), suggesting an srcin in southwest Asia Minor. But although the srcin of these shapes in Asia Minor is certain, it is possible that the islands of the eastern and northeastern Aegean (Samos, Chios and Lemnos) 2  played a vital role in their transmission to the Cyclades. It is also possible that the island communities of the eastern Aegean introduced the innovation of the poery wheel to the Cyclades. The wheel-made bowl rst appears in the Aegean at Anastasia Angelopoulou The ‘Kastri Group’ The ‘Kastri Group’ is one of the most distinctive cul- tural phenomena of the Cycladic Early Bronze Age. This paper will examine the broader cultural context of the Kastri Group by reference to evidence from the fortied acropolis at Korfari ton Amygdalion (Panor -mos) on Naxos, Dhaskalio on Keros, and Akrotiri on Thera, and will shed new light on questions regarding the character of the Group and its dating. Theoretical background Colin Renfrew was the rst to identify the Kastri Group and named it aer the eponymous selement on Syros (Renfrew 1972, 150, 172–3, 194, 203–4, 207, 533–4, pl. 9).   The Group consists of various types of small pot, which have one feature in common — the lustrous red, brown or black outer surface. Renfrew’s views formed the basis for subsequent discussion about the srcin and date of the Kastri Group, and its signicance for the development of Cycladic culture. Renfrew and other scholars have stressed the anities of the Kastri Group with the poery tradition of Asia Minor (Bossert 1967, 70, 72–3; French 1966, 49; 1968, 8; Doumas 1977a, 22; Ruer 1979, 1, 6; MacGillivray 1980, 25; Caskey 1981, 322; Mellink 1986, 146). The appearance of Kastri diagnostic types has  been assigned to both the mature Early Cycladic (EC) II and the EC III periods (Ruer 1979; 1983b; 1984; Bar -  ber 1983; MacGillivray 1983; Barber & MacGillivray 1980; Sotirakopoulou 1993; 1999). The introduction of Kastri shapes has been interpreted as symptomatic of a period of extensive change and mobility. Forti- ed selements were built and abandoned aer a short period of occupation. In the case of the fortied selements at Kastri on Syros and Korfari ton Amyg -dalion on Naxos the end was violent. These profound changes have been aributed to an inux of foreign  150Chapter 16 Emporio on Chios (Hood 1981, 175, type 4 c, g. 98), and in Asia Minor at Troy (Blegen et al.  1950, A1, 56–8, no. 13–16, pl. 262, A1, 224, no. 33. 245, 33. 252, pl. 371; 1951, A2, 24, pl. 62–3, A2, 122, no. 33. 109, F8–9. 158, pl. 155, A2, 237–9, no. 33. 113, pl. 239) and Beycesultan (Lloyd & Mellaart 1962, shape 40, pp. 179, 191, no. 6, pl. P. 46, pp. 201, 207, 211, no. 1, pl. P. 47, nos. 1–2, pl. P. 50, nos. 1–2, pl. P. 52), in more or less contemporary contexts, during the second phase of the EBA.The dierent points of srcin of the Kastri types shows that their appearance in the Cyclades is not the result of contact with one particular centre and/or the transmission of its poery tradition. The introduction of Kastri types seems to be the result of deliberate selec-tion, which was made possible by contacts with various centres in Asia Minor as well as with the cultural groups of the eastern and northeastern Aegean.The distribution and frequency of the various types of the Kastri Group is also variable. The poery has been found predominantly in selements and, less frequently, in cemeteries. The full range of diag- nostic types can be present in selements (Ayia Irini on Keos), or nearly the entire range (Kastri on Syros, Akrotiri on Thera), 3  though there are also sites where only a single diagnostic shape is aested (Korfari ton Amygdalion). The tankard appears both in selements and cemeteries, while, in contrast, the bell-shaped cup and the depas are known mainly from selements. Finally, the combinations or coexistences of types does not seem to follow consistent paerns. Thus, the presence in an assemblage of the depas does not nec-essarily imply the parallel occurrence of the tankard, and vice versa. This variability in the distribution and frequency of types is also evident in the comparable ‘Leandi I’ group from mainland Greece. Stratigraphic evidence indicates that the Kastri Group may not be a chronologically coherent entity. Some of its diagnostic types (for example the tankard and depas) appear in dierent chronologically ho - rizons as shown in a number of sites in both Greece and Asia Minor (Wilson 1999, 95–6). In the Cyclades the stratigraphic sequence at Ayia Irini indicate also the gradual introduction — even though in a short period of time — of the Kastri Group diagnostic types (Caskey 1971b, 359–96; Caskey 1972, 370–75; Wilson & Eliot 1984, 78–87; Wilson 1999, 230). Recent radiocarbon dates from Markiani on Amorgos suggest that the Group emerged in the period transitional    between Late Troy II and Troy III (Manning 1997, 513; Marangou et al . this volume, Chapter 11).The possible separation of time in the introduc-tion of the Kastri Group diagnostic types implies that the Group cannot be considered — a priori  — as chronologically cohesive. The process of adoption would have followed a dierent logic in each dier -ent geographical area or cultural group, determined  by the local social and economic conditions or needs. Thus the presence of diagnostic Kastri poery does not constitute — on its own — a safe criterion for providing a site or an assemblage with an exact date. The poery does, however, allow sites and artefact assemblages to be categorised into a cultural horizon, the beginning of which could not be earlier than late or nal EB II. This marked variability implies that the term ‘Group’ characterizes the phenomenon at an analytical level rather than in a historical sense. The genesis of the Kastri Group was due to the introduc-tion and adoption of imported cultural elements, such as specic vessel forms (the depas), types of surface treatment (lustrous slip) and technical innovations (poer’s wheel). The fortied selement at Korfari ton Amygdalion (Panormos) on Naxos  Architecture The EBA selement of Korfari ton Amygdalion was discovered in 1963 by Christos Doumas (Doumas 1967, 411–12; 1972, 166; 1988, 25–6; 1990c, 90–92; 1992c, 67–8). It extends over an area of about 500 m 2  and oc- cupies the summit of a hill, just northwest of the bay of Panormos. It is a natural stronghold, commanding the natural harbour and the adjacent valley, while at the same time being hidden from the sea by surrounding and higher hills. It has an irregular plan, and exca-vation has revealed about twenty small, stone-built rooms enclosed by a fortication wall (Fig. 16.1). This wall, built of large blocks, follows the contours of the summit of the hill, and is reinforced by ve horse-shoe shaped towers or bastions. Two bastions (Towers C and D) oered protection to the entrance opening which was a narrow passage through the eastern side of the wall, and the most vulnerable part of the acropolis. The eastern fortication wall was probably rst built further west, in the area of room 14, where the width of the room’s eastern wall compares well to that of the fortication wall.The small rooms inside the fortication were  built on a layer of stone chips which remained from  blocks worked for the construction of the wall. The rooms were accessible through narrow passages, rarely more than 0.60 m wide. The end of this Naxian acropolis was violent. The selement was destroyed  by re, possibly aer an aack. Intact vessels and groups of matching sherds were discovered amidst extensive traces of re in the entrance and in the cor - ridors. The destruction of the selement by enemy at -tack is also implied by the large number of sea pebbles  151The ‘Kastri Group’— sling shots — found at the bastions which protected the entrance. A single bronze weapon — a spearhead — was also discovered at the entrance.Korfari ton Amygdalion has been interpreted as a fortied selement. But even if it is accepted that the small rooms inside the fortication belonged to houses, consisting of one or two rooms each, and that there was an apparent aempt to secure unhindered communication via the narrow passages, it should also be noted that the range of nds is very limited, which does not accord with the interpretation of the site as a selement. Apart from ceramic vessels and round stone lids, other artefacts were relatively few. Therefore, it is reasonable to suggest an alternative interpretation, which is that the architectural remains are of a single fortied building. The plan of the forti - cation wall, which closely encircles the inside space, implies the autonomy of the structure. The possibility for further expansion was very limited, a feature not amenable to the needs of a population, which we can assume was not constant in size. It is more likely that the people who used Korfari were living in the — as yet uninvestigated — selement on the slopes of the hill, which as indicated by surface nds (poery and stone tools) and by possible architectural remains (in replace of: possible visible architectural remains and a number of surface nds such as poery and stone tools). The fort on the summit would have been a place of refuge in time of danger. But this role can also be associated with another function. The majority of the poery found inside the fort belonged to large stor -age vessels. It seems that the citadel protected not only the inhabitants of the nearby selement, but also signicant quantities of stored produce, which was of vital importance for the survival of the community. Without ignoring the peculiarities of each individual site, it is interesting to note Tsountas’s view about the fortied acropolis at Kastri on Syros (Tsountas 1899, 78, 127–9). Tsountas proposed that the acropolis was a refuge for the inhabitants of a nearby selement, which he located around the church of Panagia Cha - landriani, and to which he aributed the graves of the eponymous cemetery. The evidence from Korfari ton Amygdalion and Kastri suggests that the fortied acropoleis are architecturally autonomous but not socially independent creations, since their existence is likely to have been closely connected with neighbour- ing selements. Poery The study of the poery was based on 386 samples of dierent vessels, from a total of 4180 sherds and whole pots. Two broad categories of shapes were distinguished: open shapes (A), with seven types (Figs. 16.2–16.4); and closed shapes (B), with eleven types (Figs. 16.5–16.13). The open shapes were used for food consumption whereas the closed vessels were used for the preservation and storage of liquids and other materials in large quantities. Whole vases or groups of joining sherds were found scaered throughout the fortied area. A large number of vessels were discovered in the area around the entrance to the fort. 62 per cent of a total of 386 dierent vessels were closed shapes.The use of the poer’s wheel is not indicated on any of the examples. The clay is, as a rule, brown or red-brown, with quartz, mica or schist inclusions. Imports include vessels of talc ware, made of red clay with grey inclusions and a characteristic soapy surface; and probably the considerable number of two-handled container jars with splayed-out neck (Fig. 16.15, nos. 5, 6 & Fig. 16.7), made of reddish or brown clay with glaucophane-schist inclusions, possibly from Amor- gos where they are known from the EC selement of Markiani (Marangou et al.  this volume). The majority of examples have a thin ma slip in  brown or red-brown on both inner and outer surfaces. Exceptions are the zoomorphic vessel (Fig. 16.8) and the Kastri tankard (Figs. 16.4:31 & 16.9), the outer Figure 16.1.  Ground plan of the fortied acropolis at Korfari ton Amygdalion. (Drawing: A. Gounaris and Th. Chatzitheodorou.)  152Chapter 16 Figure 16.2.  1, 2) ‘Cooking pots’; 3–9) shallow bowls with curved walls. surface of which is covered with a lustrous red-brown slip. Less than 30 per cent of the total sample bear simple relief or incised decoration. Poer’s marks are also rare. One has survived on part of the handle and the shoulder of an incised beaked jug and another on a sherd from the body of a two-handled container jar with splayed-out neck. The identication of typologically related ves -sels both in island and mainland Greece and in Asia Minor has conrmed that the poery of Korfari was the product of long traditions. Prototypes of vessels or of individual features are aested as far back as the Neolithic period. The development of shapes can be followed through the entire EBA, and in some cases shapes continue on into the MBA. This long survival of shapes is in agreement with the ‘conservative’ character of the poery, which was made for everyday and staple needs. The general Aegean character of the 123457689  153The ‘Kastri Group’ Figure 16.3.  10–13) Shallow bowls with curved walls; 14–16) two-handled deep bowls; 17–21) deep bowls with curved walls. 101212131415161718192021
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