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Lecture 13

CLA260H1 Lecture Notes - Lecture 13: Classical Archaeology, Homeric Hymns, Johann Joachim Winckelmann

Course Code
Christian Campbell

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Classical Archaeology
Aug 13/12
What is Classical Archaeology?
Approach largely determined by one’s background
“Classical Archaeology” or “archaeology of the classical world”?
Classical Archaeology = distinct discipline or as a subdiscipline? Of archaeology? Or classical
Suggests that it is apart from other forms of archaeology
And that the skills required are notably different
Versed in Greek and Roman culture
Archaeology of the classical world is rooted in social sciences, sharing methodology of archaeol-
Both are true: classical archaeology needs to be done scientifically, but at the same time you need
to be versed in the larger discipline of greek and roman studies in order to properly interpret
The difference between the two lies in the interpretation of the role of literary evidence
Classical world has the greatest quality and quantity of any other studied civilization, :. On a dif-
ferent scale of literary output
Because of this it would foolish to just interpret as archaeological material and ignore this
Best to integrate the entirety of material
New archaeology didn’t like the reliance on literary texts - dirt archaeologists vs armchair ar-
For a long time people were using archaeological information only with a view as to where it
could help their interpretation of the literary output, ignoring things that didn’t fit into theories
This happened up until the mid-last-century but not anymore
In the second half of the 20th century to archaeology being the handmaiden of history the pendu-
lum swung the other
Now become more equalized where historians acknowledge archaeology and its affects on their
Eleusis and Athens
Eleusis sanctuary of demeter - Eleusian mysteries
Cult open to anybody who wanted to participate - slave or free, men and women
By the 5th century Eleusis was part of athenian territory (deme of Athens)
Before that the traditional view is that it had been independent at least as late as 7th century
based on literary evidence
Based on Homeric Hymn to Demeter which deals with foundation of the cult. The story is set
heavily in Eleusis with no mention of Athens anywhere in the poem
Also based on Herodotus book 1 about Telus - evidence of war between athens and Eleusis in
which Eleusis defeated and became part of athenian territory. Others say it was the site of the
battle of Megara and Athens :. Not hostile between Athens and Eleusis
Ceramic record in archaic period from Eleusis - look for separate ceramic tradition from Athens;
or evidence of a break or reintegration of athenian imports
Pottery styles proved the same in Eleusis as in Athens consistently throughout this period - no
spike or drop to indicate hostility or takeover
No indication of Eleusis pre-athenian territory in the archaeological record
Classical Archaeology
Aug 13/12
Call for historians to be more consciences of using all available information - not relying heavily
on literary without consulting archaeological
Art History
Beginnings of classical archaeology based on artifacts and art
Up until Winckelmann no one was studying past the antiquarianism
He was the father of art history
Classical archaeology’s use of art history and text makes it different from other cultures studied
in archaeology
Foreign Archaeological Schools
Particularly important in Greece
Each wanted to be in charge of their own ‘big digs’
Types of excavations that focus on large, well known sites like Delphi, the Agora, etc
New archaeology reacted against ‘big dig mentality
Jealously guarded sites - foreign schools holding on to rights of sites, exclusive to who can study
even against greek archaeologists!
Guard exclusive publication sites - have to be able to read german or french
Tied up in regulations and restrictions that Greek government puts on field work (obviously to do
with exports of past treasures)
Each school can sponsor three excavations/surveys a year - can get three permits a year for ar-
chaeology exaction and survey and cosponsor three projects with greek archaeological services
Have to employ local greek workmen to do digging - graduate students only allowed to supervise
Greek Archaeology
Majority of excavation done my greek archaeological services
Regional offices
Do the emergency excavations
Regional Surface Survey
First used in the Americas and in some degree Mesopotamia - where New Archaeology was be-
ing developed
Archaeological methodology that adopts a regional approach
Focusses not on excavation but on surface reconnaissance
Uses geographical survey, aerial survey and pedestrian survey!
Determine area that you are going to survey, divide into teams, spaced out over the area lined up,
looking over the ground as they walk across. Record where each artifact we found
No that dissimilar to what some of the early archaeologist would do to look for sites
Recreate Pausanias routes
Literary sources are very polis centric - focus on elite
Survey allows a look into the everyday economics
Coincides with the move away from literary sources
Allows you to study a larger geographic area than excavation for much less resources
Analyze quantity of evidence found - higher concentration of material helps locate sites
Classical Archaeology
Aug 13/12
However, if it very prone to human error - can miss something easily
Can miss things that aren’t ceramic - wouldn’t see a bronze coin easily
Relies on what can be seen with naked eye, and what is seen on surface
Can be affected by human activity
Annas Presentation
Sanctuaries that saw success were determined by their location
Locations presented atmosphere of peace and competition?
Mostly attended by rich people
Rise of democracy saw decline of these sites
Dedications show wealth and power
In interstate sanctuary you signal your wealth to whoever comes to that place
Athenian treasury around time of reforms
Aristocratic families decline in influence
The building (treasury) meant to commemorate victory of athenians against persians
Have theseus and heracles on facade - important in the battle of marathon
Theseus wasn’t very popular before the 6th century
At end of 6th century he was used to show new reforms of athens
Marble of the treasury showed wealth of athens
Shows athenians dominance over island of paris where they got the marble from
Temple of Apollo at foot of younger Treasury
Temple of apollo built my Clystenes with his own money
With this dedication the agmonidai family shows wealth
Treasury shows wealth of the family as well as the good of the city
Treasury built by city
Can’t see the buildings apart from each other
Periean marble is best marble you can use
Final Exam
This Friday from 2-5 in EX200
Anything is fair game
Essay questions more emphasis on methodological issues - must use examples to illustrate your