type a search term and press enter
TITLE Polis, colony and beyond: urban Knossos from Archaic to Late Antique times
AUTHOR Trainor Conor P.
LANGUAGE Αγγλικά / English
PUBLISH DATE 09.09.2019
KEYWORDS Knossos, Crete, Aegean, Greece, Archaic, Classical, Hellenistic, Roman, Late Roman, Late Antique, Early Byzantine, urbanism, surface survey, urban survey
Copy paper url
Download paper

The landscape focus of the Knossos Urban Landscape Project (KULP) casts new light on urban Archaic, Classical, Hellenistic, and Roman Knossos and for the first time affords us a view of the city as a whole during its life as a polis and as a colony. Concentrations of ceramics dating to the Archaic period to the west of the Minoan palace and south of the modern upper village may provide evidence to counter the traditional interpretation of a 6th century lacuna at Knossos. During the Late Classical or Earlier Hellenistic period, the city reached its maximum size of ca. 120 ha. During the Late Hellenistic-Early Roman period, Knossos contracted significantly in size; however, this was most likely not as a direct result of the Roman conquest. Knossos appears to have experienced significant economic reorganisation during the early years of Roman rule: the production of Knossian transport amphorae as well as the range of types produced in the city peaked during this time. Production was centred on the area southwest of the Acropolis and included the manufacture of ceramics, wine, and honey. A large concentration of non-local amphoras near the northern bounds of the city may represent a commercial rather than production locus. Imported Late Antique amphora and fineware ceramics are rare, indicating changes in urban character during the 3rd to 5th centuries CE. The northwestern distribution of most later material indicates why this period has not been widely recognised in excavations in the south of the city and documents a contracting settlement associated with the extensive excavated cemeteries of the 5th to 7th centuries CE.