Robert B. Koehl (Hunter College, City University of New York, Professor of Archaeology, Department of Classical and Oriental Studies) will address the topic “The 12th-century Aegean pottery from the Koukounaries Hill, Paros and Tell Atchana (ancient
Alalakh), Turkey: some social and historical implications and unexpected interconnections.”
This seminar will focus on the ceramic assemblages from two sites: Koukounaries Hill, Paros and Tell Atchana (ancient Alalakh), in the Hatay region of Turkey. The first part will consider the problems relating to the dating of the ceramics from the Koukounaries Hill, which have ranged from LH IIIB to LH IIIC Middle Developed. The various stylistic strains within the assemblage, which have led to the various dates proposed for the construction and destruction of the site, will be identified and explanations will be proposed to account for the stylistic diversity of the material. As will be seen, there are elements which indeed clearly recall LH IIIB 1 and LH IIIB 2 ceramics,
as well as vases that independently could be dated to LH IIIC Early. However, it will be argued that the latest vases bare all the hallmarks of LH IIIC Middle Developed and thus provide the date for the building’s destruction. Furthermore, a group of unpublished pottery from a small sounding dug below the floor of one room, down to bedrock, will be presented as evidence for dating the construction of the building. Finally, the ceramics from small post-destruction, re-occupation deposits will be presented, and will be shown to date to a later phase of LH IIIC, possibly LH IIIC Middle Advanced.
The second part will place the site of Tell Atchana in its Bronze Age Near Eastern historical and cultural context and discuss its long history of interconnections with the Aegean. Ever since excavations began in the 1930’s under the direction of Sir Leonard Woolley, Tell Atchana has been regarded as pivotal in understanding relations between the Aegean and northern Levant, from the Middle Bronze Age into the Mycenaean era (poster).Since 2000, new discoveries of Aegean material have deepened our understanding of these connections and allow us to consider how these contacts changed over time. Furthermore, with the discovery since 2011 of local imitations of Mycenaean LH IIIC pottery a new chapter in the history of Tell Atchana has been revealed. This pottery will be considered in relation to the assemblage from the Koukounaries Hill, and to recent discoveries from neighboring sites which point to the existence of a relatively short-lived
kingdom of Northern Philistia.
The seminar is organized by Marisa Marthari