Università degli Studi di Torino

Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici

Missione Archeologica italiana a Erimi (Cipro)

 

 

Excavations at Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou:

2017 Preliminary Report

 

                                    Luca Bombardieri (ed.)


Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

INTRODUCTION

 

The field research activity of the Italian Archaeological Mission involved a team of archaeologists, different specialists and students. The season research on the Bronze Age site of Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou been carried out from August 2nd to August 25th.

 

The site has been investigated in greater detail, as a research project based at the University of Torino, with the collaboration of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Cypriote Department of Antiquities.

 

The ancient site of Erimi-LtP (Cadastral Sheet LIII, Plan 46, Plots 331-336, 384; geo-coordinates 34°42’43.00” N, 32° 55’23.00” E) lies on a high plateau on the eastern Kouris river bank facing the modern Kouris Dam, on the border between the modern villages of Ypsonas and Erimi, in a position that offers a wide and unobstructed view over the river valley and the coast.

 

Archaeological investigation confirmed an occupational sequence throughout two major periods (Periods 1 and 2). The earlier Period 2, with two phases attested to (Phases A and B), covering the entire Middle Bronze Age represent the most important period of occupation at Erimi-LtP. The following Period 1 occupation follows a lengthy gap, and is related to a sporadic use of the area during the Hellenistic period, as confirmed by the collection of residual artefacts from surface and top soil deposits.

 

The Bronze Age settlement appears to have occupied two main areas, of different use and function, located on sloping limestone terraces. A workshop complex is located on the top of the hill (Area A), while the first lower terrace is occupied by domestic units (Areas B, T2 and T3). Two distinct and contemporary clusters of tombs were located extra moenia, extending respectively south (Area E) and east (Vounaros cluster) of the workshop and the residential area.

 

During the 2017 season, archaeological fieldwork recording has been supported by specific analyses undertaken on-site, in order to enhance the body of evidence.

 

A complete sampling of the filling deposits from significant working installation excavated in the cemetery (Area E) and settlement areas (Areas A and T2) was also carried out, and the collected soil samples will be opportunely processed and are going to be analyzed by Evi Margaritis and Daniele Redamante in the laboratories of The Cyprus Institute in Nicosia, in order to obtain an overall characterization of the archaeobotanic evidence from the Middle Bronze Age residential and productive contexts .

 

Mia Amadio (University of Reading) carried out systematic sampling for micromorpholoigical analysis and integrated geo-chemical analysis of depositional sequences and building materials. A series of 5 blocks were opportunely sampled in the investigated context (workshop complex, Unit SA IV). The analyses will be conducted at the University of Reading Labs.

 

As for the previous seasons, Martina Monaco (University of Sheffield) carried out the preliminary anthropological analysis and identification of the skeleton remains from the newly excavated multi-chambered tombs (Tombs 464 and 465), while completed the initial identification of the animal bones assemblages from both the productive complex (Area A) and the residential units (Area T2).The conservation laboratory activity involved a team of three restorers from the Scuola di Restauro della Venaria Reale (University of Torino, Italy), thus allowing the complete conservation of the materials coming from the excavated funerary, productive and domestic areas.

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

The fieldwork was carried out under permit and thanks to the scientific collaboration of the Department of Antiquities of Cyprus, in an on-going positive collaboration with the Direction and the Episkopi and Limassol Archaeological District Museum staff.

 

The present preliminary report is the result of a joint work that involved the excavation supervisors and the team of archaeologists and specialists:

 

Francesca Dolcetti (field supervisor of Area T1), Martina Fissore (field supervisor of Area T2), Alessandra Saggio (supervisor of the excavations in the southern cemetery – Area E), Mia Amadio (field supervisor of Area A), in collaboration with Giulia Muti (supervisor for the material assemblages processing and analysis) and with Martina Monaco who also undertaken the preliminary anthropological analysis of human skeletal remains (Appendix 1). Giorgio Pettiti, Cristina Scarrone and Tecla Casamento, carried out the final report of the restoration procedures (Appendix 2).

 

The focus of 2017 season was upon the investigation of four significant areas located both in the settlement and in the southern funerary cluster, and differentiated as to the use and function:

 

1)      Settlement. Workshop complex. Three adjacent units were identified in the western wing of the productive complex located on the top of the hill (Area A - Units SA VIII-SA X). An additional roofed unit was fully investigated in the same western wing (Area A - SA IV).

 

2)    Settlement. Residential area. A domestic unit was excavated in Area T2 on the north-western section of the residential quarter (Area T2- Unit 1).

 

3)    Settlement. Limiting wall. Two major extensions to the already identified massive circuit wall were investigated in Area T1 (Area T1 – W1), fully covering the western limit of the Middle Bronze Age settlement.

 

4)   Cemetery. Southern funerary cluster. Two additional chamber tombs (T464, T465) were excavated in the southern funerary cluster (Area E), both located just outside the major settlement circuit wall.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

THE SETTLEMENT.

AREA A – WORKSHOP COMPLEX

 

 

The excavations in the Workshop Complex produced positive results and a collection of new data related both to the complex layout and the stratigraphy of the Bronze Age occupation of this productive area.

 

AREA A covers a space of 25x25m. to date. 2017 fieldwork season aimed at analysing:

 

-           the stratigraphic and depositional sequence of unit SA IV, on the western area of the Complex, in order to investigate the different phases of construction, occupation/use and abandonment of this productive context.

 

-           the general layout of the Western Area of the Workshop complex in order to acquire new data about possible extension of Area A westwards and to obtain further information about internal viability in this area.

 

Figure 1. Schematic plan of Area A. In yellow the building-unit extensively investigated in 2017, in grey the new areas identified.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

UNIT SA IV

 

Unit SA IV has been investigated by testing a different excavation strategy involving the use of grid system. Previous methodological approach in the field involved excavation by plan. The new approach was aimed at acquiring combined data for micromorphological, phytolith, archaeobotanical and radiocarbon analyses, by evidencing sections and depositional sequences within the context analysed. The area of ca. 51 m2 (ca.10.20 X 5m) was divided in 13 squares of 1.7 x 2.06m each (see Fig. 2). Squares 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13 were investigated first and the exposed sections were documented by drawings and photographs. Representative depositional contexts were sampled by taking 5 large undisturbed micromorphological blocks along with 8 loose samples for phytoliths analysis. In addition, residual deposits within structures, notably pits and basins, and vessels, including pithoi, storage jars, basins and bowls were sampled for flotation and archaeobotanical analysis.

 

Figure 2. Schematic plan of SA IV showing the grid system applied to the excavation of this roofed-unit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

Layout and construction

 

Likewise the adjacent units of the complex, SA IV was carved < 0.60m. deep into the limestone bedrock, with the same NE-SW orientation observed in the other building-units analysed. The inner space of the building was organised as single unit with the access placed on the long western wall (W9). The access placement of SA IV differs from the general layout observed in the other roofed units of the Complex (SA I, SA IIb, SA III), which were organised with doorways placed on the south-western corner. The doorway of SA IV is marked by a limestone monolith, which was carved and dressed as stepped threshold (D 100), equipped with a door pivot and limestone jambs. it seems likely that the entrance was originally placed on the western wall of the building since the early Phase B; nevertheless, the limestone threshold was presumably added in the later Phase A, when the shell wall W9, in four courses of limestone blocks, was constructed.

 

Two occupation phases have been analysed in building-unit SA IV; however only one layer of floor plaster has been observed in the occupation sequence, since in the early phase B the limestone foundation bedrock was directly used as floor as described in the stratigraphic graph Tab. 1. The absence of a thick depositional sequence marked by two or more plaster floor layers, suggested that the destination of use of this unit remain unchanged, or was just slightly modified. This hypothesis is supported by comparison with evidence from unit SA I, SA IIa and SA VI, where the more pronounced transformation during Phase A goes along with the construction of a new floor plaster. The wall building technique adopted in the constriction of unit SA IV is similar to that of other buildings investigated in Area A to date, with walls constructed over a bedrock foundation base with a stone footing in limestone blocks and an upper part in mudbricks. The identification of a deposit of collapsed mudbricks in the southern area of the unit, allowed us to collect new data about size and manufacture of this building material. The intact mud-bricks recovered in the field measure 0.40x 0.14x0.12m, thus to hypothesize the use of wooden moulds in their production. The yellow mortar adopted as binder was applied in layers of 2.5-3.5 cm.

 

Furniture and artefacts, floors and occupation deposits.

-       Phase B

 

The early Phase B occupation is stratigraphically and architecturally attested by very few evidence. One circular pit (Ft. 117) (Diameter: 68 cm; Depth: 34 cm), which was placed in the middle of the unit space, can be ascribed to this earliest phase. The use of this circular features as pit is certified by the recovering of several materials within the filling, notably a big shell (S.H. 5), one spindle whorl (P. 55), and several ceramic fragments including a jar/pithos base, which were possibly discarded and collected inside the pit. It is worth noting that this feature was completely sealed by the thick layer of yellow floor plaster, which was laid on the unit space during the later Phase A. Other installations pertaining to the early occupation phase, include an oval shallow basin carved into the bedrock floor, which was placed on the north-western corner of the unit (Ft. 112) (Measures: 0.85x0.70x0.15m), and a series of post-holes of different diameter and depth (Fts.110, 111, 113, 114, 116, 121), which were possibly used as supports for perishable structures.

-       Phase A

 

During Phase A, an 8 cm thick layer of yellow silty clay loam floor plaster was laid on the entire space of unit SA IV. A series on new installations were constructed during this phase. On the long eastern side of the unit, opposite to the entranceway, two big pits were carved into the bedrock floor and into the base of the wall (B. 7). The first one, Ft. 109 (Measures: 0.80x1.36x0.46m), which was placed on the north-eastern corner of the unit, is associated with a small bowl (P.14) and an unworked picrolite (S30). The second one, Ft. 115 (Measures: 0.80x1.50x0.75m), was placed in front of the entranceway, and is associated with few pottery fragments.

 

 

 

 

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

Table 1 Stratigraphic sequence of deposits and materials analysed in unit SA IV. Abbreviations and codes: D. = doorway, followed by field no.; Ft.= architectural installation, followed by field no.; W.= wall, followed by field no.; [number] = stratigraphic number given to deposit in the field.

 

 

Field

 

Field

Deposits and materials

 

stratigraphy

 

interpretation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Post-

 

- Top soil:

Natural brown, sandy clay loam [342] turbated by faunal and

abandonment

 

floral activity and organic decay

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Collapsed limestone blocks (including re-used gaming stones)

 

 

 

wall mixed with brown sandy clay loam [740];

 

 

- Destruction:

Brown/Orange, silty clay loam and mudbricks debris [753];

 

 

 

Pale brown sandy-silty clay loam [746];

Abandonment

 

 

Dark brown sandy clay loam mixed to charred matter [741];

 

 

- ? Ritual

Pale yellow silty clay deposit covering a set of basins and bowls

 

 

placed in front of the entranceway.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

- Storage

Fixed elements: 2 circular pits excavated on the base and

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

bedrock floor of SA IV (Fts. 109, 115).

 

 

 

Bin in limestone slabs (Ft. 119)

 

 

 

Semi-fixed elements: Pithoi P88, P89, P90

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

- Heating

Portable objects:  2 cooking pots (P. 17, P.33)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-Transporting/

Portable objects: 2 jugs (P.19, P. 54)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

pouring

 

 

 

2 juglets (P. 18, P. 53)

Use - Phase A

 

 

 

 

 

4 bowls (P. 20, P. 30, P. 42, P. 43)

 

 

 

 

 

 

1 basin (P.45)

 

 

 

 

 

 

1spouted basin (P. 44)

 

 

- ? Textile

Portable objects: 4 spindle whorls (P. 16, P. 37, P. 38, P. 56)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-Processing/

Fixed elements: Bench in limestone slabs (Ft. 120)

 

 

grinding

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

- Walls

Shell wall made of four courses of limestone blocks (W.9)

Construction -

 

 

Yellow, sandy clay loam mud-brick wall (collapsed) [743]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Phase A

 

- Doorway

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Limestone threshold (D.100)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

- Floor

Buff, silty clay loam floor plaster (F.19)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

- Processing

Fixed elements: Oval basin carved into the bedrock floor (Ft.

 

 

112)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Use - Phase B

 

 

Fixed elements: Circular pit carved into the bedrock floor (Ft.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

- Discard

117) associated with various  materials including >20 pebbles,

 

 

one shell (S.H. 5), frequent ceramic sherds, notably a jar/pithos

 

 

 

 

 

 

base, one spindle whorl (P.55)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Construction -

 

-Internal

Post-holes (Fts. 110, 111, 113, 114, 116, 121)

Phase B

 

structure

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Foundation bedrock used as floor [302]

 

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

 

Loose samples for phytoliths analysis along with samples for archaeobotanical analysis have been collected. Furthermore, parts of the depositional sequences accumulated inside the two pit structures were left to permit future GS-MS analysis in order to obtain evidence about possible traces of organic residues. Storage activity in SA IV is further attested by the occurrence of three large pithoi in RP (P88, P89, P90), both placed on the north-eastern corner of the unit. The largest one (P88) was supported by a circular emplacement in limestone blocks and field stones (Diameter: 45 cm). A series of pouring and consumption/transporting vessels were also accumulated on the north-eastern corner of SA IV, including two RP jugs, P.19 and P. 54, two juglets, P.18 and P.53, and two bowls, P.20 and P. 30, the first one associated with a small stone weight (S.31). Possible productive uses of this building-unit appear to be also suggested by the occurrence of a bin (Ft. 119; Measures: 0.85x0.80m) and a bench (Ft. 120; Measures: 0.80x0.45m) in limestone slabs bound with plaster, which were placed on the eastern side of SA IV, and by two cooking pots (P.17 and P.33). A small assemblage of spindle whorls (P.16, P. 37, P.38, P. 56) was also recovered on the floor plaster of SA IV, scattered on the North and Eastern side of this unit. However, it is important to stress, that no secure association with textile activity in this building can be formulated, as spindle whorls are portable objects, which are easily movable and transportable from a building to another.

 

As also observed in the other roofed units of the Complex, materials were principally assembled on the north and eastern sides of the buildings. Of a particular interest is a set of four RP vessels identified on the western side of SA IV, in front of doorway D.100. The assemblage includes one large basin (P. 45), one medium-size spouted basin (P. 44) and two hemispherical bowls (P. 42, 43). Their placement in relation with the entranceway and the fact that the entire assemblage was possibly deliberately sealed by a layer of yellow silty clay, which prevented the damage and breakage of these materials, suggested the idea of a presumed ‘ritual’ abandonment of the productive complex.

 

Abandonment process

 

Analysis conducted in the field permitted to identify marked differences in the destruction sequence pertaining to the north and south area of SA IV. In the norther area, the collapse of stone wall structure [US 740] covers the entire unit space, with major accumulation of limestone blocks and field stones on the eastern side of the building, which suggested that walls collapsed inside the unit space. A 5 cm layer of degraded mudbrick mixed with plaster cobbles and sandy clay loam [US 753] overlays the floor plaster. The thick destruction deposit has produced in some areas the partial loss of the underlying plaster floor. The southern part of the structures shows a different depositional sequence, characterized by the occurrence of an extended layer of ash deposit mixed to burnt materials [US 741], underlying the collapsed stone wall structure. One ignition point has been identified on the south-western area of the unit, which caused the hardening of the underlying deposits of degraded mudbrick material. The two areas of SA IV appear to have been separated each other by a mudbrick wall [US 743], which was partially recovered within the collapsed layers.

 

THE WESTERN EXTENSION

 

Investigation on the Western wing of the complex exposed the complete plan of three new buildings, denominated SA VIII, SA IX and SA X respectively; all of them are parallel oriented with the other building-units excavated in Area A to date. SA VIII, the biggest unit of the three, measures 10 x 6.50 m approximately with a doorway placed on the south-western corner, as also identified in building-units SA I, SA IIb and SA III. The doorway is marked by a monolithic threshold (D. 118) of 1.35x0.40 m, equipped with a door pivot and stone jambs like D. 100 in SA IV. Building units SA IX and X are smaller in size, measuring 5.00x.4.00m and 3.50x4.00m respectively. Further investigation in these units will be aimed at clarifying the internal layout of these areas and in particular their access points in relation with the other building-units and open areas of the Workshop Complex.

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

 

THE SETTLEMENT.

 

AREA T1 – THE LIMITING SETTLEMENT WALL

 

The excavation in the area of the large settlement limiting wall (Area T1) confirmed the relevance of this massive wall structure, that appears to limit the settlement to the West, following the natural edge of the terrace. The current extension of the wall is 31.5m. The structure is 1.60/1.70m. width, a cut within the bedrock of 0.60/0.70m. deep was done to create the foundation of the structure and filled with rubble stones and large stone blocks with plaster mortar. Such a foundation structure would be able to support a wall in dry-stone masonry up to 1.80/2.00m. in elevation. This impressive wall structure appears as a sort of circuit wall of the settlement and can be presumably ascribed to the most recent phase of occupation of the settlement (Phase A), during the end of Middle Bronze Age.

 

Stratigraphy and architectural layout, occupation deposits and associated material assemblages

 

Area T1 extends over an area of ca. 491 m². located on a minor terrace in the western section of the settlement. The investigation in this area conducted during the 2016 archaeological campaign, revealed a massive wall structure, that fully limits the settlement to the West, following the natural edge of the terrace. In this season, the archaeological investigation of the area aimed mainly to investigate the extension and placement of the wall, as well as building materials and techniques used to build the wall structure. For this reason, two new extensions of the trench have been opened, one eastward (5x5m) and one westward (9x8.50 m).

 

The extension of the digging area has affected the eastern and western sides of the trench, which currently measures 31.4m. in the E-W direction and 15.83m. in the N-S direction.

 

As far as the stratigraphic sequence is concerned, T1 shows two occupational phases (Phase B and

A), as recorded in the following Table 2:

 

Table 2 Stratigraphic sequence of deposits and materials analysed in Area T1. Abbreviations and codes: D. = doorway, followed by field no.; Ft.= architectural installation, followed by field no.; W.= wall, followed by field no.; [number] = stratigraphic number given to deposit in the field.

 

 

 

Field

Field

Deposits and materials

 

 

stratigraphy

interpretation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Post-

- Top soil:

Natural brown, sandy clay loam [1] turbated by faunal and floral

 

abandonment

activity and organic decay

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fixed elements: Basins Fts 2-4, 11

 

Use - Phase A

 

 

 

Post holes Fts 5,6, 10,14

 

 

 

Portable objects: 3 Juglets (T1.P1, T1.P2, T1.P6).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Construction -

 

Foundation wall (W1). Trench wall in limestone blocks and

 

Phase A

 

rubble stones core

 

 

 

 

 

Use - Phase B

 

Fixed elements: Basins Fts 1, 7-9, 12,13,15,16.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Foundation bedrock [2]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

 

In the first Phase B the built space is characterized by the presence of working structures cut in the limestone bedrock US2. A series of five basins (Fts 1,7-9 and 12) were excavated during the last fieldwork season. Within both eastward and westward extensions three additional large squared basins have been brought to light: Ft 13 (US -38; width: 0.97m., depth: 0.60m.), Ft. 15 (US -40; dimensions: 0.81x0.71x0.28m.) and Ft 16 (US -41; width: 1m., depth: 0.50m.), which extends over the western border of the excavated area.

 

During Phase A the space was completely transformed with the construction of a huge foundation wall W1 (UUSS -13, 14, USM 16; dimensions: 0.31x1.70x0.60m.), running W-E along the northern limit of the trench. The extension toward the East and West is not definitive because the wall extends over the actual limit of the trench. The wall W1 has been built within the foundation trench defined by two parallel cuts into the bedrock (respectively, UUSS -13 and -14).

 

A 1m. wide test sondage, opened in the eastward extension, revealed that the foundation trench is filled by large-size (average dimensions: 0.50/0.60x0.30/0.40m.) and medium-size (average dimensions: 0.20/0.30x0.15/0.20m.) limestone blocks and slabs horizontally displaced, soil and rubble stones.

 

A small collection of RP sherds, along with a fragmentary small bronze plaque (M1) and a fragmentary terracotta spindle-whorl (P41), with standard incised decoration, were found out in the test sondage excavated within the foundation trench, thus confirming the chronology of the construction.

 

During this phase, four basins (Fts 7,8, 13 and 15) were integrated within the foundation trench and filled with soil and rubble stones. A post-hole Ft 14 (US -39; dimensions:0.15x0.15x0.06m.) has been found carved at the bottom of the basin Ft 13. Together with three post-holes (Fts 5,6 and

 

10)     brought to light during the last season; it is probably related to the wall frame-structure or, alternatively, connected with the support of the wall elevation.

 

 

 

THE SETTLEMENT.

AREA T2 – RESIDENTIAL AREA

 

The excavation in the residential quarter, located in the major lower terrace of the settlement, revealed the extension of a large rectangular domestic unit in Area T2 (Unit 1; 8,30x5m.). The access to the Unit to the North is marked by a large stone threshold and a stair that directly connects this domestic unit with the top of the hill, where the production complex is located. A series of small-scale work installations (mortars, pots emplacements) and a large deep pit cut into the bedrock below the Unit floor were found. The installations, along with the residual artefacts assemblage suggest a domestic use for this area.

 

Stratigraphy and architectural layout, occupation deposits and associated material assemblages

 

 

Last 2016 fieldwork season involved the investigation of a new area (Area T2) extending over a 10x7.60m. area; this is respectively located to the South-West of the Workshop complex (Area A) and to the East of the already excavated residential area (Area B). During this season, the investigated area has been extended over the north-eastern section of the previously investigated area (5.50x7m.). The aim of this season was two-fold: outline the overall extension of Unit 1 and investigate the area between the upper and the lower terrace, in which the modern dry stone masonry terracing wall seems to follow a possible ancient landmark.

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

Under the topsoil (US 1), almost the entire investigated area appeared covered by part of a huge collapsed wall (US 60, CW 4) that seems originally following a north-east/ south-west axis, following the difference in height of the area. The collapse layer is formed by limestone blocks and large size squared blocks, especially spread on the northern section. Expectedly, dressed stones of smaller dimensions were found on the opposite southern limit of the Unit. The collapsed wall structure can be interpreted as part of a sort of terracing wall built to adjust the difference in height between the two terraces. It was probably a dry stone masonry wall, built by medium squared slabs and blocks and small internal filling stones, and leaned directly on the bedrock base (B9), whose surface is regular and wider (1.10m until the limit of the northern section of the excavated area) than the usual base used for the Unit’s walls (according to a building technique, already observed at Erimi-LtP). The different building technique (walls without an upper part made of mudbricks, compared to the Unit’s walls), linked to the wall particular function, may explain the need for a wider base and the extension of the collapse. The construction of the modern terracing wall, along with the presence of Hellenistic and medieval/modern ceramic sherds confirm that this is a disturbed context.

 

Below this, other two collapsed walls have been exposed (US 61, CW5; US 107, CW6) which have been interpreted respectively as the eastern wall and part of the southern wall of the Unit 1. Both the walls collapsed inside the Unit 1, according to the different location and orientation of the stones compared to CW4.

 

Unit 1 is a roofed unit, whose southern limit was partially exposed during the 2016 fieldwork season. It is visible just part of its extension (8.20 x 5m.), while the rest of the room currently lies over the western limit of the currently excavated area. The wall (USM 1) in dry stone masonry that plug up an asymmetry of the bedrock, continues towards the northern section, and, together with the rock cut US -6, outlines a small roofed annex room (2.60x2m.) within the major Unit 1. The wall turns toward west (USM 4). Two regular cuts into the bedrock (US -6, US-105) outline a major rectangular roofed unit. The built space is defined by the bedrock base (B3) on the eastern side, the bedrock base (B9) on the northern side, the bedrock base (B4), together with the wall (USM 1), the western side of the little room and the wall (USM 4, W5), the southern side. Both the northern and southern limits of the Unit 1 continue over the western section of the excavated area. The entrance to Unit 1 is located on the north-east corner and is characterized by a peculiar stair-like structure with a stone monolithic threshold (D2). Presumably, the stair was linked with the terracing wall, being both in the higher point of the terrace. This structure (that probably continues over the eastern section of the excavated area) is composed by two huge limestone blocks (1x0.25m., Ft. 27), the monolithic threshold D2 and a lower floor level made by a compact layer of plaster and limestone blocks (US. 108). Unfortunately, US. 108 appears heavily damaged by the collapse of the wall (CW5). The threshold D2 was made with a huge limestone squared block (broken in two parts), measuring 1.20x0.30m. The limestone block, carefully carved, shows two door-socket, completely preserved, associated with one probable damaged rounded setting, maybe used as locking-door. The particular orientation of the entrance is interesting for understanding the communications system inside the settlement, and, especially, from the lower terrace to the upper one. Part of two walls (USM 2, USM 3), probably composed by two courses of dry stone masonry, are located respectively on the right and left side of the structure. They were made by medium squared blocks, directly leaning on the bedrock base.

 

The bedrock floor, in the eastern and south-western section is partially covered by a hard white plaster (US 106, US 74), intended for flattening and regularizing the bedrock. In this area, a pot emplacement (Ft. 36) is almost completely covered by plaster (US 74), where an entire RP medium jug (P51), partially mottled, comes from.

 

A huge pit (Ft. 26) has been found in the south-eastern section of Unit 1. It is composed by two rock-cut into the bedrock used like entrance and a sort of underground chamber. The cuts are different: one (US -62) is regular and circular (0.50x0.45m.), opening exactly to the center of the chamber below; the other (US -63) is less regular and semicircular (0.65x0.72m.) maybe because of the worst

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

condition of the bedrock, and its passage to the chamber is oblique and opens on the side of the underground structure. The latter (US-64) was carved on the bedrock and is regularly circular (1.50x1.50 m.). In the filling deposit (US 65, US 76) were found few ceramic sherds, a small truncated-biconical picrolite ornament (S32) and a reduced number of animal bones (AB 13-19). The different working treatment of the two cuts is visible also in the type of closure, since the first one was closed with a worked semicircular limestone block (0.65x0.45 m.) while the second one with an irregular flat limestone slab (0.65x0.45 m.). The cut (US -63) lies into the little annex while the other (US-62) on the limit south-east of the space of Unit 1; two rectangular limestone blocks lie between the two cuts and seem close the little room, even if the bedrock below is very thin for sustaining a separation wall. Two spindle-whorls (P40, P39) come from near the rock-cut (US -63). P40 is a Red Polished III spindle-whorl, possibly imported.

 

At the center of Unit 1, a semicircular cut (U.S.-73) into the bedrock was also found. It is, presumably, a circular basin (Ft.28) with part of the south limit hardly damaged (probably 1.40x1.20x35 m.), maybe because part of it was made or completed not cutting the bedrock but with plaster (some traces are visible on the bedrock) or other material type.

 

The north-west corner of the Unit 1 is characterized by the presence of numerous working installations directly carved into the bedrock. Two emplacements (Fts 29 and 32) (average diameters: 0.29x0.29m, and 0.16m deep) and two circular basins (Fts. 30,31) with stone flat base embedded into the bottom, interpreted as mortar-like installations. Four undetermined fragments of animal bones (AB 20) come from Ft.30 and one from Ft.43. Three post-holes (Fts 37,38,42; average depth: 0.24 m) have been identified and four holes (Fts. 34,39,40,41; average diameters: 0.16m, 0.07m deep) of small dimensions and depth, which probably can be used as post-holes too. Near this working space, an elongated oval quern is still in situ, placed on the bedrock floor.

 

In general perspective, this space can be identified as a working area with the huge pit interpreted as a storage pit (also because no traces of burns or other sign are visible), linked with the circular basin and with the mortar-like installations and the emplacements. This hypothesis seems to be confirmed by the residual artefacts assemblage, especially formed by fragmentary medium and large jugs (majority of handle fragments show finger impressions on the top).

 

It is worth to mention that a complete series of samples taken from U.S. fillings of the pit and emplacements have been taken and will be analysed, in order to trace possible organic residues within the samples.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

THE SOUTHERN CEMETERY

AREA E FUNERARY CLUSTER

 

 

As mentioned above, the cemetery extends just outside the wall in T1. As far as the funerary architecture is concerned, four major types of tombs have been identified on two adjacent funerary terraces:

 

-    Pit tombs have elliptical or irregularly rounded plan and have been carved within the natural flat surface of the lowest identified terrace.

 

-     Chamber tombs have single or double irregularly rounded chambers with a cave-like section, a short dromos leads to the grave chamber of tombs 228-230, located on the upper terrace, while more deep shaft dromoi were cut in the lower terrace where the entrances were roughly outlined by regularizing the terrace façade.

 

-   Pit/chamber tombs appears to have a mixed structure in between the major mentioned types.

 

-   Multi-chambered tombs are characterized by large vertical dromoi, with roughly elliptical shape, that give access to up to four irregularly rounded chambers

 

 

The Southern funerary cluster (Area E) extends on a series of terraces sloping towards the South-East of the settlement. A series of 13 rock-cut tombs were excavated during last 2008-2016 fieldwork seasons. The tombs lie on two limestone terraces, whose facade has been slightly worked out arrange a better, regularized slope, for the tombs’ entrance.

 

With regards to Area E, the main purpose of the 2017 season was to further investigate the cemetery area in order to better understand the mortuary rituals and funerary practices of the Bronze Age community of Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou.

 

Two interesting additional multi-chambered tombs (Tombs 464 and 465) have been excavated during this season, of a peculiar interest as to the architecture and burial ritual.

 

The tombs T464 and T465 are located on the upper terrace of the southern funerary cluster, just outside the settlement limiting wall (Area T1). The choice to investigate the upper terrace has aimed both at outlining the extension of the necropolis towards the West and at better defining and comparing the chronology of the funerary and settlement areas.

 

T464 and T465 revealed a new type in the funerary architecture attested at Erimi-LtP. This type of multi-chambered tomb is characterized by the presence of a vertical, roughly elliptical, dromos in which up to four single underground funerary chambers are located.

 

Tomb 464

 

The dromos of Tomb 464, cut into the terrace natural bedrock, gives access to four single underground chambers, with vertical access and irregularly elliptical or rounded plan. Chambers A and C are respectively located to the West and East section of the dromos and appear larger than Chambers B and D, respectively located on the North and South section of the dromos. Chambers A and C were found partially looted.

 

Chamber A shows a roughly rounded plan (diameter: 1.40m.); probably it was originally closed with a large stone slab, found inside the chamber tomb in front of the access. The original structure of the chamber have been partially destroyed, since the looters entered the chamber through the roof. Only three fragmentary objects can be associated with the original offering deposit, two of them have been partially reconstructed. Few bones fragments have been also recovered from the funerary deposit.

 

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

Catalogue:


 

Tomb 464A P3 Tomb464A P6


 

Amphora. RP local. Six joining fragments (rim+body+handle

attachment) + four non-joining fragments (body sherds + base).

Undecorated.

Large spouted bowl. RP local with double pierced ledge.


 

Chamber B has an irregular roughly elliptical plan (maximum diameter: 1.52m., on East-West; minimum diameter: 1.10m. on North-South). The tomb have been closed with a large stone slab stomion rectangular in shape with convex long sides. The stomion appears to have been sealed with a compact plaster layer, found adjusted against the stone slab. A roughly rectangular shallow cut appears on the deposition floor, possibly related to ritual function. The funerary deposit is composed by 8 vessels, along with a few sherds pertaining to additional ceramic containers, while no bone fragments have been recovered. The reduced number of deposited vessels, in respect to the standard recorded in coeval chamber tombs at Erimi-LtP, seems to suggest a short-time use of the tomb, presumably connected to a single burial.

 

Catalogue:


 

Tomb464B P8

 

Tomb464B P9

 

Tomb464B P10

 

Tomb464B P11

 

 

Tomb464B P12

 

 

Tomb464B P13

 

 

Tomb464B P14

 

Tomb464B P15

 

 

 

 

Tomb464B X1

 

Tomb464B X2

 

 

 

 

Tomb464B X3


 

Bowl. RP local. Complete small hemispherical bowl with a vertical lug.

Traces of white paste filling in the groove.

Bowl. RP local. Complete small hemispherical bowl with horizontal

pierced lug (vertical circular perforation).

Bowl. RP local. Complete small hemispherical bowl with vertical

handle (ladle). Mended from four fragments.

Cooking pot. RPC. Complete small double cooking pot with a tripod

base. Mended from 6 fragments. Two vertical handles of different

sizes.

Juglet. RP local. Complete cut-away mouthed small juglet. Short

handle from rim. Incised and impressed, and relief decoration filled

with a white paste, on body, neck, and handle.

Juglet. RP local. Almost complete small juglet. Cut-away mouth,

cylindrical neck, globular body, and round base. Vertical handle from

rim. Incised decoration on upper part of body, traces of white filling.

Bowl. RP local. Almost complete hemispherical bowl, mended from

12 fragments.

Jug. RP local/DP. Almost complete cut-away mouthed globular jug,

medium size. One vertical handle below rim, incised and relief

decoration on handle and body, slight traces of white paste filling

inside incision.

Tiny bead. Picrolite. Complete, cylindrical in shape, with rounded

edge. Central straight perforation

Tiny bead. Soft white stone traslucent (alabaster?). Complete, flat

cylindrical in shape, with rounded edge. Central straight perforation,

some traces of drilling/micro abrasion/regular chipping along

perforation.

Tiny bead. Soft gray stone. Complete, cylindrical in shape. Central

straight perforation, some traces of drilling/regular chipping along

perforation.


 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report


 

Tomb464B X4


 

Tiny bead. Limestone. Complete, flat cylindrical in shape. Central straight perforation, slightly irregular.


 

 

 

Chamber C faces Chamber A to the West. These two chambers also have similar dimensions (diameter: 1.55m.) and roughly rounded plan. Likewise Chamber A, Camber C have been found partially looted, in a similar manner and possibly as a single looting action.

 

A small assemblage of funerary objects have been recovered from this tomb, such as a set of seven terracotta spindle whorls assembled along the eastern section of the funerary chamber. Few bones fragments have been also recovered from the funerary deposit.

 

Catalogue:


 

Tomb464C P16

 

 

Tomb464C P17

 

 

 

 

Tomb464C P18

 

 

Tomb464C P19

 

 

Tomb464C P20

 

 

 

 

Tomb464C P21

 

 

Tomb464C P22

 

 

 

 

Tomb464C P23

 

 

Tomb464C P24

 

 

Tomb464C P25

 

Tomb464C P32

 

 

Tomb464C S1


 

Spindle whorl. BP Complete truncated biconical with rounded

carination. Incised decoration on body and broad terminal. White

paste filling preserved.

Spindle whorl. BP. Complete small truncated biconical with round

carination. Broad terminal slightly concave. BP. Incised and

impressed decoration on broad terminal and body. White paste filling

visible.

Spindle whorl. RP local. Complete truncated biconical with round

carination. RP. Incised decoration on broad terminal and body. Pretty

deep incisions, white paste filling preserved.

Spindle whorl. BP. Complete biconical with round carination, slightly

asymmetrical. BP. Incised decoration on broad terminal and body.

Pretty thick and deep incisions. White paste filling preserved

Spindle whorl. BP. Complete truncated biconical with round

carination spindle whorl. BP. Very flat broad terminal. Incised

decoration on broad terminal and body. Pretty deep and thick

incisions. Traces of white filling preserved.

Spindle Whorl. BP. Complete truncated biconical with round

carination and convex sides. BP. Incised decoration on broad terminal

and body.

Spindle Whorl. RPIII. Complete truncated biconical with round

carnation and straight sides. Convex broad terminal. Incised

decoration on broad terminal and body with traces of white paste

filling.

Spindle whorl. RP local. Complete conical, slightly

asymmetrical (broad terminal oblique). Decorated with rough

incisions on broad terminal. Traces of white paste filling.

Spindle whorl. RP local. Complete truncated biconical with round

carination, mended from three fragments. Incised and impressed

decoration on body and broad terminal.

Bowl. RP local. Complete medium,                       hemispherical in shape, but

elongated. Horizontal lug below rim,

Bowl. RP local. Mended from five fragments. Decorated with a

vertical lug          slightly upsung from rim showing two parallel thick

vertical incisions.

Pendant. Picrolite. A bit more than a half of a 'disc', very flat biconical

in shape. Central perforation drilled.


 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report


 

Tomb464C S2


 

Pendant. Picrolite. Complete small button or pendant, biconical in shape. Light blue picrolite. Central drilled perforation.


 

 

 

Chamber D is located in the south section of the tomb, facing Chamber B. It has roughly elliptical plan (maximum diameter 1.50m. on East-West; minimum diameter 1.10m. on North-South).

 

An assemblage of 18 ceramic vessels have been recovered from this funerary deposit, with few examples of peculiar relevance.

 

A few human bones fragments have been also recovered from the funerary deposit of this chamber.

 

Catalogue:


 

Tomb464D P26 Tomb464D P27 Tomb464D28 Tomb464D P29 Tomb464D P30 Tomb464D P31 Tomb464D P33 Tomb464D P34 Tomb464D P35 Tomb464D P36 Tomb464D P37 Tomb464D P38 Tomb464D P39


 

Bowl. RP local. Almost complete of a medium hemispherical bowl.

Jug. RP. Almost complete, globular elongated/oval flattened at base

body. Handle from lower neck/shoulder. A circular spout attachment

is visible on body, but no parts of spout preserved. Incised and relief

decoration on neck and handle filled with a white paste

Jug. RP local/DP. Almost complete of a small/medium jug with a

globular elongated/oval flattened at base body Vertical twist handle.

Relief and incised decoration on body and handle (traces of white

paste filling visible).

Juglet. RPIII. Complete, globular body, vertical handle from rim,

Intensively decorated on neck, body, and handle with quite complex

incised motifs filled with a white paste.

Jug. DP. Almost complete medium jug, globular body, pointed base,

vertical handle from rim. Relief and incised decoration with traces of a

white paste filling.

Juglet. RP local. About 2/3 or less of a juglet. Globular body, round

base. Vertical handle. Decorated with two round knobs with flat upper

surface.

Juglet. RP local. Globular body, and round base. Handle preserved for

a small trait. Relief and incised decoration on neck and body.

Juglet. RP local. Globular body round end, slightly pointed/bumped.

Undecorated.

Duck-shaped askos. RP local. Complete, peculiar globular/elliptical

horizontally elongated body. Cut-away mouthed; straight constant rim

with rounded end. Cylindrical quite straight neck. Vertical handle

from rim. Round base. An elongated knob Decorated with incisions

filled with a white paste on handle, neck, and body.

Jar. RP. Complete vessel with peculiar unusual form, similar to a

small jar. Relief, impressed and incised decoration with a white paste

filling.

Juglet. RP local. Almost complete, globular body and round base.

cylindrical neck. Vertical handle from rim. Decorated with incisions

filled with a white paste on upper part of body.

Jug. RPIII. Almost complete, globular elongated body. Decorated with

incisions filled with a white paste. Decoration characteristic of the RP

III or juglets imported from North Coast.

Jug. RPIII. Almost complete, globular body, double-pecked

("horned") vertical handle. Extensively decorated with incisions on


 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report


 

 

 

Tomb464D P40 Tomb464D P41 Tomb464D P42 Tomb464D P46 Tomb464D P47 Tomb464D P48


 

neck and body; traces of a white paste filling are visible. Imported

from North Coast.

Bowl. RP local. Almost complete large spouted bowl; Truncated

cylindrical body, flat base. A double pierced horizontal ledge on rim

located oppositely the spout. Undecorated.

Askoid juglet. BP. Almost complete, mended from 13 fragments.

Globular body, flattish round end. Two small holes are located close

to each other below rim. Decorated with quite thick incisions filled

with a white paste.

Askoid Juglet. BP. Body/base and a bit of neck attachment preserved.

Mended from 12 fragments. Globular body; round flattish end.

Decorated with impressions and incisions filled with a white paste.

Amphora. RPIII. Globular body and flat base. Decorated with pretty

deep incisions on handles, neck and body (traces with a white paste

filling visible). Imported from the North Coast.

Jug. DP. Globular body and round flattened base. Relief and incised

decoration on body and handle.

Jug. RP local. Mended from 16 fragments, oval elongated body and

flat base. Decorated with incisions on handle, neck, and upper body.


 

 

Tomb 465

 

The multi-chamber Tomb 465 lies to the East of T464. It is composed by a roughly rounded dromos, where the access to a single small circular chamber (diameter: 1.05m,) is located.

 

The roof of this funerary chamber was severely damaged by modern vegetation, which caused the its partial collapse. An assemblage of 8 ceramic vessels was displayed along the southern section of the chamber, on the opposite side of the entrance.

 

To the North-eastern section of the dromos a specific area was evidently devoted to the display of ceramic vessels used during the mortuary rituals.

 

On the North section of the dromos it is partially evident the access to a possible second chamber heavily damaged by the construction of a modern terracing wall.

 

Catalogue:


 

Tomb465 US 2 FN1 Tomb465 US 4 FN1 Tomb465 US 4 FN2 Tomb465 US 4 FN3 Tomb465 US 4 FN4 Tomb465 US 7 FN1 Tomb465 US 7 FN2 Tomb465 US 7 FN3 Tomb465 US 7 FN4 Tomb465 US 7 FN5 Tomb465 US 7 FN6 Tomb465 US 7 FN7 Tomb465 US 7 FN8


 

Spindle Whorl. RP.

Jug. DP/RP.

Jug. DP/ RP.

Bowl. RP.

Juglet. RP.

Juglet. RP.

Large bowl. RP.

Jug. RP.

Amphora. RP.

Small Bowl. RP.

Askos. RP.

Small Bowl. RP.

Medium bowl. RP.


 

 

 

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

APPENDIX 1

Preliminary anthropological analysis of osteological material

 

Human skeletal remains

AREA E- Tomb 464

 

The 2017 fieldwork season in the cemetery area was focused on the investigation of four chambers included in the more articulated architecture of Tomb 464, lie on the limestone terrace already excavated in 2008.

 

Three funerary chambers (chambers A, C and D) have released few human bones fragments. Three small fragments of a probable homerus were discovered on the north-east limit of the chamber A (partially looted), small fragments of skull and and os coxae were located under the vessel assemblage of the chamber C , in the north-west side, and other small fragments of upper limbs (radial and ulnar shaft) were recovered from the chamber D (partially looted). Due to the paucity of the sample, neither sex nor age of the inhumed have been assessed. In the same way no information about the MNI could be obtained.

 

Chamber A

 

Inventory

Element

Preservation

 

 

 

ERIMILtP17.T464A.B1

3 fragments of long bones

3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chamber C

 

 

 

 

Inventory

Element

Preservation

 

 

 

ERIMILtP17.T464C.B1

3 fragments of skull

3

 

 

 

ERIMILtP17.T464C.B2

5 fragments of os coxae

3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chamber D

 

 

 

 

Inventory

Element

Preservation

 

 

 

ERIMILtP17.T464D.B1

3 fragments of R(?) radial shaft

3

 

 

 

ERIMILtP17.T464D.B2

2 fragments of probable ulnar

3

 

shaft

 

 

 

 

ERIMILtP17.T464D.B3

5 small fragments of long

3

 

bones

 

 

 

 

ERIMILtP17.T464D.B4

9 small fragments of long

3

 

bones

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

 

Animal bones assemblage

 

A reduced number of animal bones in fragmentary state were recovered from two significant contexts in the residential quarter (Area T2). 16 fragments of skeletal remains pertaining to caprovines were recovered from the filling deposit of the large pit Ft. 26 (US 76), while a reduced amount of undetermined animal bones fragments were also recovered from the basin Ft. 30.


 

ErimiLtP17.T2.F26.us76.AB13 ErimiLtP17.T2.F26.us76.AB14 ErimiLtP17.T2.F26.us76.AB15 ErimiLtP17.T2.F26.us76.AB16 ErimiLtP17.T2.F26.us76.AB17 ErimiLtP17.T2.F26.us76.AB18 ErimiLtP17.T2.F26.us76.AB19 ErimiLtP17.T2.Ft30.us80.AB20 ErimiLtP17.T2.Ft43.us104.AB21


 

1 fragment of left humeral (trochlea). Ovis

 

2 fragments of a tibial shaft. Ovis

 

1 fragments of shaft

 

1 probable fragment of ischiopubis ramus. Ovis (?)

2 fragments of mandible notch

 

7 small fragments

 

2 teeth (M1+?). Ovis

4 small undetermined fragments

 

1 small undetermined fragment


 

 

APPENDIX 2

Artefact restoration: methods, procedures, and treatments.

 

Conservation of ceramics

 

The first phase has been addressed to a preliminary cleaning of the all ceramic and terracotta objects by water with toothbrushes and brushes to remove soil incrustations on the surface.

 

After this process becomes evident the relevant presence of limestone encrustations and concretions. Such encrustations were removed either with scalpel, or, when they were more extensive and thick and difficult to remove by mechanically, by a soak in citric acid diluted in a 7% water solution for about 15 minutes, when the artefacts were still wet. Afterwards, the finds were rinsed in running water and they were soaked in purified water to limit the natural saline efflorescence.

 

Ceramics, which presented the standard incised decoration of the Red Polished and of the Drab Polished Ware, were not treated with baths but using compresses of cellulose pulp soaked in citric acid diluted in 10% water solution for about 20-25 minutes, ensuring a selected and controlled cleaning. In presence of limestone films sometimes was adopted a chimical cleaning with Trisodic EDTA diluted in a 10% purified water solution. Whereupon the objects were rinsed with purified water applied with cotton swabs.

The finds were dried at open air, avoiding direct exposure to the sun.

 

Some of the ceramic artefacts with uneven surface, were consolidated by Paraloid B72 diluted in a 5% aceton solution with brushes or immersions.

 

As to the heaviest ceramic fragments, it was necessary to carry out through extended baths in a acetone solution (Paraloid B72 at 3%). During the phase of drying the evaporation of the solvent was slowed down putting them in a closed bin to guarantee a better imbibition.

 

Before proceeding to mending procedure, a preliminary and temporary mounting by paper tape has been necessary. This phase permitted to identify the correct collocation of the fragments and the better mending sequence. Furthermore, Paraloid B72 diluted in 10% acetone solution was spread on fractures to ease the reversibility of the mending.

 

The mending was carried out with different glues depending on the weight and the size of the ceramic object. Mowital B60HH diluted in 20% alcoholic solution was adopted for smallest ceramic

 

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

vessels. For heavier and thicker fragments pertaining to largest vessels (as pithoi), it was used epoxy resin (UHU ENDFEST 300).

 

Pithos P88 had large gaps that mainly in the central part of the body, so was necessary to reconstruct the missing parts to facilitate the study and to improve stability . It was used Polyfilla Interior colored with colors in powder. For a small fragment, whose attacs were so fleeting, was necessary the application of a renforce on fracture by an epoxy stucco (Milliput terracotta).

 

Finally the integrations were treated with Paraloid B72 at 5% in acetone solution to accord the color with the original ceramic surface.

 

Conservation of bronze plaque M1 (Area T1)

 

The bronze plaque M1 from Area T1 was mechanically cleaned with scalpel in order to remove consistent earth deposit on the surface and for smooth corrosion products. This phase of cleaning permit the identification of decorative elements. Afterwards, it was soaked in purified water to remove possible corrosion soluble products. Later it was dried in open air and dehydrated with alcoholic solution and acetone spread with a brush.Superficial protection has been realized with spread of Benzotriazole at 3% in alcool and with Paraloid B44 at 5% in acetone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Missione Archeologica Italiana a Erimi (Cipro). Dept. StudiUm, Università di Torino Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou: 2017 Preliminary Report

 

 

TEAM

 

The Italian Archaeological Mission at Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou is a research project based at the Dipartimento Studi Umanistici, University of Turin. Research is carried out by a joint team archaeologists and specialists. Team participating to the fieldwork:


 

Luca Bombardieri Giulia Muti Francesca Dolcetti Martina Fissore Marialucia Amadio Alessandra Saggio Paolino Tripodi Giulia Sola Stefania Spano Laura Temistocle Federica Ravera Silvia Parodi Martina Sabbatini Elena Peri Flavia Pettorini Andrea Villani Daniele Redamante Gilulia Albertazzi Martina Monaco


 

(Project Director, University of Turin, Dpt. Studi Umanistici);

(Supervisor, Archaeologist, University of Manchester, PhD Student);

(Supervisor Area T1, Archaeologist, University of York, PhD student);

(Supervisor Area T2, Archaeologist, University of Turin-Lyon 2, PhD Student);

(Supervisor Area A, Archaeologist, University of Reading, PhD);

(Supervisor Area E, Archaeologist, University of Turin);

(Archaeologist, Area T2; University of Turin/Erasmus Trainee);

(Archaeologist, Area T1; University of Turin/Erasmus Trainee);

(Archaeologist, Area T2; University of Turin/Erasmus Trainee);

(Archaeologist, Area A; University of Turin/Erasmus Trainee);

(Archaeologist, Area A; University of Turin, MA Student);

(Archaeologist, Area T2; University of Turin, MA Student);

(Archaeologist, Area T2; University of Turin, MA Student);

(Archaeologist, Area T1; University of Pisa, MA Student);

(Archaeologist, Area A; University of Bologna, MA Student);

(Archaeologist, Area A; University of Turin);

(Archaeologist, archaeobotanist, University of Turin, BA Student);

(Draftsman, University of Bologna, MA Student);

(Paleoanthropologist, University of Sheffield, PhD Student);


 

 

Conservation Laboratory - Restorers team, University of Turin, Venaria Reale:

 

 

 

Giorgio Pettiti (UniTo, MA Student); Cristina Scarrone (UniTo, MA Student); Tecla Casamento (UniTo, BA Student)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

 

 

 

The archaeological research project at Erimi-Laonin tou Porakou is carried out thanks to the scientific collaboration of the Department of Antiquities of Cyprus. I wish to express my gratitude to the Director Dr. Marina Solomidou-Ieronymidou, to Mr. Yiannis Violaris and to Ms. Demetra Aristotelous, Archaeological Officers of the Lemesos District and to the kind cooperation of the staff of the District Archaeological Museums of Episkopi and Limassol. Thanks are also due to Lefteris Charalambous, conservator of the Department of Antiquities, for his advice and support. Their kindness, support and suggestions greatly aided our research and make all of us hope for on-going collaborations.

 

 

 

I wish to thank the Italian Embassy in Nicosia for the support and for the interest in our Project, particularly the Ambassador Dr. Guido Cerboni, as well as Dr. Tommaso Coniglio, Deputy Head of Mission, who kindly supported us before and during the fieldwork season.

 

 

 

A particular thank to the Dipartimento Studi Umanistici- StudiUm at the University of Turin, and to the Director Prof. Enrico Maltese for his steady support and for the interest in the research project. The project is grateful to the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MAE – DGSP VI Archeologia), the University of Turin and the EU Erasmus Traineeship program for funding and support the 2017 fieldwork season.

 

 

 

 

 

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Università di Torino
Università di Torino