Journal of Mediterranean Archaeology, Vol 9, No 2 (1996)

Specialized Pottery Production on Bronze Age Cyprus and Pottery Use-wear Analysis

Laurinda Dugay

Abstract


Cypriot archaeological pottery analysis has been characterized largely by descriptive, classificatory and chronological research. Furthermore, early analyses were biased geographically towards the north of the island and were almost totally reliant on material excavated from tombs. This paper investigates the question of specialized pottery production for funerary internment. The clarification of Prehistoric Bronze Age (c. 2400-1700 BC) pottery production will help elucidate arguments for increasing social complexity which frequently incorporate the specialized production of funerary or ritual pottery. Use-wear analysis is proposed as the most appropriate means of investigating the question of the specialized production of funerary pottery. Red Polished Pottery from cemetery and settlement sites of the Prehistoric Bronze Age in Cyprus is studied and compared for the presence and patterning of use-wear. The results suggest a domestic origin for much of the Red Polished Pottery recovered from Prehistoric Bronze Age tombs, a result that offers a far greater corpus of potential information about society at this period than initially perceived. The implications of these results also affect currently proposed models of pottery production and social behaviour in funerary contexts.

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DOI: 10.1558/jmea.v9i2.167






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