Among a large group of pottery figurines handed over to the Ephorate of Antiquities of Rethymno, three figurines of comic actors are of special interest. The figurines were found in “Katis Kamara”, in the territory of Sybritos, the most powerful city in the Amari valley during antiquity. Although no architectural remains were found in the small-scale excavation conducted by the Ephorate, it seems very probable that a rural shrine existed at the site. The shrine was used from the Subminoan-Early Geometric period to Hellenistic times.
Two of the comic actor figurines (P. 35827 and 35829) depict a man, with a comic mask dressed in somation and himation, seated on a square altar, holding a pouch. The type has been interpreted as a slave seeking asylum after the theft of the pouch and is considered of Attic origin. The third figurine of the group, that of a standing man, wearing a somation and making an exaggerated gesture (P. 35814), has no known parallel. It is a combination of handmade body and mold-made head. Another figurine of a comic actor was found in Falasarna: it shows a standing fat man with mask. Figurines of comic actors are rare in Crete, with examples known only from Knossos and the Lera cave. All the above figurines are locally made and demonstrate that at least some aspects of Attic drama reached 4th c. BC Crete, as had the circulation of figurines or molds.
The figurines from Sybritos are an indication of the interest in theater in the area, an interest that is ascertained for the Hellenistic period. Two inscriptions inform us that the Sybritians of the 2nd c. BC honored with proxeneia the comic actor Ptolemaios of Argos and the romaistis Agathodoros of Sidon, two of the many artists travelling through the expanded Hellenistic world.