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Excavations at Sissi III

 | 
Jan Driessen
, 
Charlotte Langohr
, 
Quentin Letesson
, 
et al.

4.3. The Excavation of Zone 4

Quentin Letesson

Note de l’auteur

Postdoctoral Fellow FRS-F.N.R.S. (Université Catholique de Louvain). Team: M. Anastasiadou (University of Marburg), C. Cajot (Université de Liège), M. Hanquart (UCLouvain), G. McGuire (Vrakhasi), K. Jacobson (Vrakhasi), N. Kress (UCLouvain), G. Metaxarakis (Vrakhasi), M. Pietrovito (University of Vienna), E. Stevens (Bryn Mawr College), H. Thomas (University of Zagreb)

Texte intégral

1The main goals of the excavation campaign in 2011 in Zone 4 were to determine the southeast limits of Building CD (see rooms 4.12, 4.13, 4.18 and area 4.20), to excavate the southern spaces identified in 2010 (spaces 4.15-4.18) as well as the central corridor (space 4.21), and to conduct local tests in key areas of the building and in its immediate vicinity (spaces 4.7-4.9, 4.11, 4.19 and 8.4, and within the destruction level against the west facade). After this fifth season, the latest levels of occupation (mostly LM IIIB) were reached throughout the building, and discrete, deeper soundings were conducted and earlier levels reached that gave insights on previous phases of occupation on the top of the Kefali.

1. Building CD

2Some of the rooms and spaces described here were already discovered and excavated at various levels of completion in previous campaigns (spaces 4.7-4.9, and 4.11-4.13). Their description in this volume is therefore limited towards rather specific issues (e.g. the blocking of a door, a test in earlier levels, etc.); more comprehensive accounts of these rooms can be found in the previous volumes of the preliminary reports (Sissi I: 136-137 and Sissi II: 108-117 and 121-129). The rooms mostly or totally excavated during the 2011 season (spaces 4.15-4.18, and 4.21) receive a fuller description.

3Before the room-by-room description, a remark is necessary on the foundation deposit that was discovered in 2008 between wall C1 and D11 (Sissi I: 133-134, figs 6.26-27). During the 2011 campaign, these walls were thoroughly cleaned for consolidation and, during this process, part of a MM II carinated cup was found (fig. 4.19). It seems likely that this cup was part of the same deposit and could give a terminus post quem. Since all other MM architectural remains are at a much lower level, it cannot be excluded that the cup was a heirloom by the time it was included in the deposit.

Fig. 4.19. MM II CARINATED CUP IN THE FOUNDATION DEPOSIT BETWEEN C1 AND D11 (Q. LETESSON)

1.1. Room 4.7

  • 2 This block was later seen to have a dowel hole.

4In an attempt to obtain a better picture of the stratigraphy in room 4.7, the excavation was continued. At first, it focused on the southwestern part of the room where part of a massive stone tumble, previously identified as wall D31, was left in place in 2009 (Sissi II: 110, fig. 5.35), but, ultimately, the whole room was attacked with the exception of the floor level identified to the east of wall D42 (Sissi II: 109, fig. 5.30). During the removal of the tumble, a small deposit was unearthed that seemed to have rested on a damaged floor surface (see arrows on figs 4.20 a-b). It comprised a broken plate (11-04-1780-OB002), a lid (11-04-1780-OB003), part of an amphora (11-04-1780-OB004), a juglet (11-04-1780-OB007), the upper part of a stirrup jar (11-04-1785-OB003), a broken quern (11-04-1780-OB005), and several lithic tools (11-04-1780-OB001, 11-04-1780-OB006, 11-04-1785-OB001, 11-04-1785-OB002, 11-04-1785-OB004, and 11-04-1785-OB005). The soil that was removed to clean the deposit contained a fair amount of ash, fragments of plaster as well as flecks and small fragments of schist that might have been part of some roofing material (domatochoma). When the evacuation of the tumble and the deposit came to an end, two small roughly hewn blocks (one of which was in ammouda) were left in place (ca. 0.25 x 0.30 m; ht. 0.34 m and 0.35 x 0.35 m; ht. 0.22 m for the ammouda block). So close to the façade D63, it seems unlikely that they constituted part of a wall. They probably formed a small platform or a stand (figs 4.21 a-b). On figure 4.21 a, a second fragmentary ammouda block2 found nearby in the tumble was tentatively placed on top of the first one which has roughly the same measurements. On the same figure (see arrow), one can also notice, next to wall D27 delimitating the room the south, the upper face of a large block that turned out to be part of an earlier (Neopalatial?) wall. Apart from the small patch of floor surface identified beneath the plaster stack that probably corresponded to the level on which the hypothetical column bases D59 and D74 rested (Sissi II: 110, fig. 5.34) as well as to the floor level to the east of D42, the work conducted so far in room 4.7 could not identify a clear level of occupation throughout the space. For this reason, excavation was resumed over the entire surface of the room which yielded some noticeable results.

Fig. 4.20. A-B: TUMBLE IN THE SOUTHWEST CORNER OF ROOM 4.7 AND FLOOR DEPOSIT (SEE ARROWS–Q. LETESSON)

Fig. 4.21. ROMM 4.7: A-B: PLATFORM (?) ALONG WALL D63 (Q. LETESSON)

5Below the level reached at the end of the previous campaigns (Sissi II: 112), the northern part of the room kept on producing a large amount of plaster fragments, some painted in red or dark blue. In the corner between walls D49 and D63 was a small deposit (fig. 4.22), comprising a smashed pithos (11-04-3623-OB004), the upper part of a small jar (11-04-3623-OB005), a cup (11-04-3623-OB006), a stone vase fragment (11-04-3623-OB001) and a stone lid (11-04-3623-OB007), as well as an obsidian blade (11-04-3623-OB002).

Fig. 4.22. ROOM 4.7: DEPOSIT IN THE CORNER BETWEEN WALLS D49 AND D63 (Q. LETESSON)

6When this deposit was removed, a slightly harder surface appeared. The latter might have constituted an earlier floor level, the traces of which were also spotted along D42 where many pebbles were found. Between these areas, as seen on fig. 4.23, and further south in the room, the soil was silty and yellowish to light brown. Locally, especially around the hearth (see below), it also contained many small stones, broken lithic tools and loom weights, as well as a fair amount of rolled sherds (some of which apparently as early as EM IIB, i.e. Vasiliki ware). Such a layer probably constituted a fill and might represent a leveling operation, particularly visible in the south part of room 4.7.

Fig. 4.23. NORTHERN PART OF ROOM 4.7 WITH HYPOTHETICAL FLOOR SURFACE (WHITE ARROWS) AND FILL AREA (Q. LETESSON)

  • 3 For a general discussion on hearths of various types in the Eastern Aegean (Crete, Cyprus, and Phil (...)

7Already visible during the 2010 campaign (Sissi II: 111, fig. 5.35) and originally considered as part of the tumble, several stones turned out to circumscribe a roughly oval area which contained ashy earth and many flecks of charcoal (fig. 4.24). Identified as a hearth, this stone feature, located just to the north of D59, was labeled D75. It can be tentatively argued that this hearth, located in between column bases D74 and D59 and clearly closer to the latter, could have been contemporary with the latest phases of the room. As such, it could have been a half-sunken hearth, with its lower stones being at ca 0.20 m deeper that the base of D593.

Fig. 4.24. ROOM 4.7: HEARTH D75 AND SURROUNDINGS (Q. LETESSON)

8The excavation of the neighboring room 3.11 (see Gaignerot, this volume) also made it clear that an opening had existed between the latter and room 4.7. This doorway, 1 m wide, was located between walls D17 and D27 (fig. 4.25). Already provisionally identified during the excavation of the southern part of room 4.7 (Sissi II: 108), its existence is now unquestionable. Its blocking and transformation into a small niche, probably during the latest phase of building CD, almost totally cut the north sector of the building from the intermediary zone (Sissi II: 87, fig. 5.5).

9It is also worth noting that another wall labeled D43, perpendicularly to the south extremity of wall D42, was better delineated. It is on an east-west axis and runs towards room 3.1. It seems likely that this wall belongs to an earlier (Neopalatial?) phase of occupation of the area.

Fig. 4.25. ENTRANCE BETWEEN WALLS D17 AND D27, SOUTHEAST CORNER OF ROOM 4.7 (Q. LETESSON)

1.2. Room 4.8

  • 4 This would make the hypothesis of a window sill more satisfactory than a door.

10Room 4.8 was almost entirely excavated in 2009 and 2010 (Sissi II: 113-115). After the removal of a large stray boulder partly lying on D61 and C1, the northern section of wall C1 was thoroughly cleaned (fig. 4.26a). This revealed a potential opening – maybe a door or a window sill – between rooms 4.8 and 4.5 (see white arrows on fig. 4.26a). As a matter of fact, the masonry in this part of the wall is somewhat different (made of small and medium-sized stones rather than the large boulders that form C1 further to the south). This opening, of course, remains hypothetical, especially if one considers that room 4.5 may well have been out of use during the latest occupation phases of building CD4. During the same cleaning operation, a small rectangular feature – labeled D76 – made of small-sized stones (ca 0.60 m x 0.30 m) was also uncovered in the southeast corner of the room, between walls C1 and D22/C3 (fig. 4.26b).

Fig. 4.26. A-B: NORTHEAST AND SOUTHEAST CORNERS OF ROOM 4.8 (Q. LETESSON)

1.3. Room 4.9

11In 2011, we also briefly returned to room 4.9 to examine the outer face of the northern facade wall D62. This contributed to contradict the previous hypothesis of the existence of a blocked opening (Sissi II: 115). Once carefully cleaned and cleared of floating stones, the alignment of wall D62 simply appeared to have been severely disturbed, possibly when the summit of the hill was under cultivation or used as a military position.

1.4. Room 4.11

12Excavated in 2009 (Sissi II: 121-126), pillar hall 4.11 was the theater of three small tests, all conducted in the south-southwestern part of the room. The first test consisted in excavating a large depression filled with pottery fragments, just to the north of wall D39 (Sissi II: 125-126). It turned out to be a shallow area corresponding to a slight variation in the level of the bedrock (fig. 4.27). This hollow was filled with sherds, probably in an attempt to level the area for the creation of one of the latest floors of the room. Some of the sherds are clearly LM IIIA. In the same area, a test was also opened to find out if wall D39 continued to the west. This turned out not to be the case as it stops at the pillar base D32 (see white arrow on fig. 4.27).

Fig. 4.27. PIT IN THE SOUTHWEST CORNER OF ROOM 4.11 (M. PIETROVITO)

  • 5 On fig. 4.28, the stones marked with a white * could be all that is left of this badly preserved th (...)

13The third test was mostly a cleaning operation of the doorway between rooms 4.11 and 4.17 (fig. 4.28). It revealed that a threshold may have once existed5 there when the floor surface of the two rooms were presumably at the same level (see below).

Fig. 4.28. DOORWAY WITH ROBBED OUT THRESHOLD (?) BETWEEN ROOM 4.11 AND 4.17 (Q. LETESSON)

1.5. Space 4.12

Fig. 4.29. SPACE 4.12 UNDER EXCAVATION AND FRAGMENTS OF A DRAIN 11-04-3628-OB001 (Q. LETESSON)

14One of the main goals of the 2011 campaign was to uncover the southeastern limit of building CD. For this purpose, the dump located just to the east of spaces 4.12, 4.13, and 4.18 was pushed east to allow a 2.50 m wide test. As frustrating as digging through a dump may be, the operation was a success: good eastern limits were found for the aforementioned spaces and the continuation of the street level identified along wall D2 was discovered (Sissi I: 137-138; Sissi II: 136-139).

15Within room 4.12, the first goal was to reach the level where the excavations stopped in 2009 (Sissi II: 126-127, fig. 5.61). A ca 2.70 m stretch of wall, labeled D71, was unearthed and this almost certainly constituted the east limit of the room (fig. 4.29). It is badly preserved and its northern part is lost apart from one or two large boulders, close to wall D36, which may have been part of it. With this new wall taken into consideration, 4.12 forms a 15 m² room connected with room 4.13 by means of a large ammouda threshold in wall D36, and with space 4.18 by a large opening between walls D33 and D71. It is worth noting that the whole area cleaned in the test beneath the dump was heavily disturbed. When the excavations started in 2007, the area already presented a small mound made of earth, rubble and bushes (see fig. 4.51), which is why the spot was chosen to discard our own soil. The nature and composition of this earth (many small to medium-sized stones, loose earth and very few sherds) suggest itself to represent dumped material (either from earlier excavations or from wartime intervention). It is not unlikely that these operations contributed to damage the architectural remains in this particular area.

16In the process of reaching the level where excavation stopped in 2009 in the western part of the room, a surface was identified which bore many small pebbles and stones. It could have constituted a floor – missed in the west part of 4.12 – on which the slightly higher wall D33 could have rested. On this surface were found the fragments of a drain (11-04-3628-OB001) (fig. 4.29), a gourna (11-04-3628-OB002), a lithic tool (11-04-3631-OB001), and a pumice tool (11-04-3631-OB002).

  • 6 This spool is a roughly made version of the same kind of object found in an impressive set in room (...)

17When the 2009 level was reached throughout the room, it appeared quite clearly that it did not correspond to a floor surface because large sherds were protruding through it. Somewhat lower, small patches of a badly preserved floor level were identified at different locations within room 4.12. It was covered with a yellowish layer of silty earth and, locally, patches of decayed mud-brick and ash. Wall D34, bordering room 4.12 to the west, was clearly associated with this floor level. The latter yielded two obsidian blades (11-04-3643-OB001 and 11-04-3647-OB003), a small vessel (11-04-3647-OB002), four stone tools (11-04-3643-OB002-005), two ‘pot boilers’ (11-04-3643-OB006 and 11-04-3647-OB006) found together, a spool (11-04-3647-OB001)6, a small stone cylinder (11-04-3647-OB004), and a fragment of stalactite (11-04-3647-OB005).

18During the cleaning of the head of wall D71, we came across a lentoid seal (11-04-3636-OB001) (see Anastasiadou, below) and a half-spherical stone object with a pierced base (11-04-3636-OB002). This may have been a game board piece or the pommel of a small dagger (figs 4.30a-b).

Fig. 4.30. A. LENTOID SEAL 11-04-3636-OB001. B. STONE OBJECT 11-04-3636-OB002 (CHR. PAPANIKOLOPOULOS)

1.6. Room 4.13

19As in room 4.12, the main goal of the 2011 season in room 4.13 was to find its eastern limit by removing a part of the dump that was just next to it. Unfortunately, the area was particularly disturbed and, apart from two large boulders that might have once been part of a wall (see fig. 4.52 b below), no clear limit could be securely identified that would have bordered room 4.13 to the east. When the floor level in the eastern part of the room was reached where excavation ended in 2009 (Sissi II: 127-129), it appeared that wall D36 was also badly preserved, with only a few stones suggestive of its original alignment (fig. 4.31).

Fig. 4.31. ROOM 4.13 UNDER EXCAVATION (Q. LETESSON)

20The northeast corner of the area, just to the north of feature D40, the ammouda platform, was found covered with medium-sized stones and boulders embedded in a very hard reddish layer (see white arrows on fig. 4.31). This surely corresponds to the fire destruction level discovered a bit further to the east, laying on top of the street level in space 8.1 of which the upper layer was also characterized by a massive stone tumble (Sissi II: 136-139).

1.7. Room 4.15

21Rooms 4.15-18 constitute the southern limit of building CD. Their general plan was traced at the end of the 2010 campaign (with the exception of the east of space 4.18, see below). Information about their size and surroundings walls can be found in the previous preliminary report (Sissi II: 132-135).

Fig. 4.32. A-D: DESTRUCTION DEPOSIT IN ROOM 4.15 – EXCAVATION STEPS (Q. LETESSON)

  • 7 It is precisely in this location that part of a sidheropetra slab that had the usual shape and smoo (...)
  • 8 This plate was extremely fragile and it seems reasonable to suggest that its paste may have been ma (...)

224.15 turned out to be the most interesting space in this row of rooms. It formed a relatively small, square room not connected to the rest of Building CD but only open onto space 5.17 (Devolder, this volume) through a 0.80 m wide doorway between walls D51 and D52. In terms of features, the room presented a bench-like structure crudely made of medium-sized stones along the northern half of wall D53 (figs 4.32 a-b). In an attempt to determine if an opening could have existed in the northeast corner of the room towards 4.167, this hypothetical installation was eventually removed during the excavation of the massive floor deposit of the room. The second installation of the room was constituted by a small L-shaped stone structure – labeled D70 – abutting wall C10 in the northwest corner of the room (figs 4.32 c-d and 4.33 a-b). This feature partly bordered a cooking area found full of ash, flecks of charcoal as well as seashells (limpets) and the remains of sea-urchins. It also produced a cooking plate (11-04-3618-OB002), presumably in situ, made out of the footless base of a tripod cooking pot (see white * on figs 4.33 a-b)8. In the light of these discoveries, it can be soundly argued that D70 and the cooking plate worked together as a hearth, the wood being burnt in the area delimited by the L-shaped feature – where most of the ash was found – and the charcoal produced being used in connection with the cooking plate. Just to the west of this installation, a small pit was found (ca. 1 m x 0.80 m; some 0.40 m in depth from the floor surface). At the bottom of this pit, the bedrock seemed to have been roughly cut and served as foundation for the north-south part of D70, as well as for wall C10 (fig. 4.34 b). An inverted conical cup (11-04-3629-OB003) was found just beneath the lower course of the wall and may have formed some sort of modest foundation deposit (see white arrow on fig. 4.34 b).

Fig. 4.33. A-B: COOKING AREA IN ROOM 4.15 (A-B) AND ASSOCIATED PIT (B) (Q. LETESSON)

  • 9 Whether this collapse was the result of a sudden earthquake – which seems more likely – or the prog (...)
  • 10 For a recent discussion and references on LM III and Minoan hut models, see Hallager & Hallager 201 (...)

23Stratigraphically, the situation of room 4.15 was particularly clear: a rich destruction deposit was found lying on a relatively well preserved hard-packed earth floor surface. Judging by the vessels – and especially the large pithoi – found squashed on the floor, this deposit seems to testify to a single destructive event that certainly provoked the collapse of the surrounding walls (fig. 4.32 a)9. The deposit produced several pithoi (11-04-1779-OB001, 11-04-1779-OB002, 11-04-1779-OB004-007, 11-04-1779-OB009-010, 11-04-1779-OB013, and 11-04-1789-OB004-005), a deep bowl (11-04-1779-OB003), a fine decorated globular stirrup jar (11-04-1789-OB009) (see Langohr, this volume), the upper part of another globular painted stirrup jar (11-04-1789-OB001), a terracotta hut model (11-04-1789-OB003)10 (fig. 4.35 a), the head of a small terracotta statuette (11-04-3614-OB001), a set of miniature vessels (fig. 4.35 b) comprising a juglet (11-04-1794-OB001) and two opium poppy-shaped goblets (11-04-1761-OB002 and 11-04-1766-OB001), a lentoid seal (11-04-1770-OB001) (see Anastasiadou, below), several lithic tools (11-04-1761-OB001, 11-04-1779-OB011, 11-04-1779-OB014, 11-04-1798-OB002-003, 1104-3614-OB004), grinding stone fragments (11-04-1762-OB002 and 11-04-3614-OB005), three actual grinding stones found stacked upside down, one on top of the other (11-04-3614-OB002-003 and 11-04-3614-OB006), four stone vase fragments (11-04-1762-OB001, 11-04-3600-OB002, 11-04-3614-OB007, and 11-04-3618-OB003), a pierced pumice stone (11-04-1754-OB001), a bronze needle (11-04-3600-OB003) and an obsidian blade (11-04-3600-OB001).

Fig. 4.34. A-B: PIT IN THE NORTHWEST CORNER OF ROOM 4.15 (Q. LETESSON)

  • 11 The earth that was found around the pithos fragments was extremely loose wich is consistent with th (...)

24It is also worth noting that the pit in the northwest corner of the room was found filled with the sherds of a large pithos (11-04-3618-OB001) which was probably originally embedded in the cavity (fig. 4.34 a)11. It contained a large amount of limpets as well as the remains of many sea-urchins (figs 4.36 a-b). It is not unlikely that, at some point, this pithos may have been used as a kind of trash bin to discard the remnants of the food prepared just next to it, in the cooking area. Also in the pit were found two lithic tools (11-04-3621-OB002 and 11-04-3629-OB001), a small bronze blade (11-04-3621-OB003), and three conical cups (11-04-3626-OB002 and 11-04-3629-002-003).

  • 12 This type of kitchen-pantry only opening onto the exterior is also a common phenomenon in LM I (Bro (...)

25If one takes the material and the installations of 4.15 into consideration, it does not seem too far-fetched to suggest that this room may have worked simultaneously as a small storage space (pantry) and a kitchen. The fact that the room only opened onto the exterior suggests that it was used in close connection with the open area that was located immediately south of building CD (Sissi II: 154-159 and Devolder in this volume). It can thus be argued that the meals prepared in the cooking area, the goods stored in the pithoi, and more generally the vessels and objects found in the room were used outside on specific occasions like communal meals. It is indeed difficult to imagine that the secluded character of the kitchen-pantry 4.15 might have been dictated by the concern of keeping food and fire at some distance of other activities for reasons of cleanliness and safety (cf. Brogan & Barnard 2011: 197), because several other cooking areas are securely identified at different locations within building CD (for example in rooms 4.7, 4.8, 4.11, see above and Sissi II: 113-114 and 121-126). The existence, in LM III, of small rooms fitted with a hearth and yielding cooking wares and installations that were part of a building but only connected to the exterior – often in close relation with a relatively large open air space – is far from unusual12. Examples can be found in Quartier Nu at Malia (Driessen et al. 2008) or in the so-called ‘cook sheds’ of the LM III town of Mochlos (Soles et al. 2008: 8-9 with references). The only thing that clearly distinguishes room 4.15 from these humble ‘cook sheds’ or small kitchens-pantries is the fact that part of the material discovered in the room is of a type and quality (e.g. the decorated stirrup jars, the hut model, the miniature vessel set, the lentoid seal, etc.) which does not quite fit with the idea of a space only dedicated to food processing and short-term storage of consumable goods. One would then be tempted to suggest that room 4.15 also acted as storeroom for less mundane objects that may have been used in relation with the activities taking place in the open area to the south.

Fig. 4.35. ROOM 15: A-B: HUT MODEL (11-04-1789-OB003) (A) AND MINIATURE VESSEL SET (11-04-1794-OB001, 11-04-1761-OB002 AND 11-04-1766-OB001) (B) (CHR. PAPANIKOLOPOULOS/G. MCGUIRE)

Fig. 4.36. A-B: PIT IN THE NORTHWEST CORNER OF ROOM 4.15 (REMAINS OF LIMPETS AND SEA-URCHINS) (Q. LETESSON)

1.8. Room 4.16

26Located just to the east of room 4.15, room 4.16 yielded less interesting results. It contained no floor deposit, far less sherds than the adjoining rooms and very few finds. Once a very clayish fill (roofing material?) was removed, we quickly reached an uneven floor level throughout the room. It was partly made out of bedrock as well as hard-packed earth, together with patches of a pebble surface. While cleaning the room, we uncovered a fair amount of wall plaster fragments, traces of charcoal, ash and small bones along D53 and, in the northwest corner of the room, several stone tools (11-04-1760-OB002, 11-04-1765-OB001-002, 11-04-1775-OB001), the foot of a kylix (11-04-1760-OB001), and some fragments of stone vases (11-04-1776-OB001 and 11-04-1782-OB001).

27The most noticeable feature of room 4.16 is the presence of an earlier wall, labeled D69, along C10 (fig. 4.38). It was built directly on top of the bedrock – at least in its eastern part – and simultaneously reused as a step towards room 3.3 and probably some kind of work platform in its western section. The discovery, stacked against D69, of a possible set of lithic tools is indeed in favor of this interpretation (see fig. 4.37 and the white arrow on fig. 4.38).

Fig. 4.37. NEST OF LITHIC TOOLS ALONG D69 (Q. LETESSON)

Fig. 4.38. ROOM 4.16 AT THE END OF ITS EXCAVATION (Q. LETESSON)

1.9. Room 4.17 and niche 3.7

  • 13 Although most of the material from the fill was dated to EM III-MM IA (Driessen, this volume, fig. (...)

28Very much like 4.16, room 4.17 forms a small roughly square room. Their only difference in layout is the existence, in the northwest corner of the latter, of a small niche, labeled 3.7. The excavation of this room made us realize that the stratigraphy was more complex than originally assumed. Already during the superficial cleaning of the area in 2010, it was noted that the room produced an unusual large number of sherds (Sissi II: 133). In 2011, a very thick fill (ca. 0.35 m in depth) was found to cover the entire room, with about 12.000 sherds for a total of ca. 130 kg. Preliminary ceramic analysis shows that the fill includes a large quantity of EM III/MM IA sherds with less Protopalatial and Neopalatial (perhaps some LM IB), the latter indicating when the fill may have been put down13. Indicated by the white arrows on fig. 4.39, one can clearly see this thick fill in the northern section of the room. Note that the poorly preserved threshold identified between room 4.11 and 4.17 (see above, fig. 4.28, as well as the slabs bordering niche 3.7 to the west seem to rest almost directly on top of this fill. Together with the small deposit of four miniature jugs found in niche 3.7 in 2008 (Sissi I: 122-123, fig. 5.72), these stratigraphical observations suggest that a later floor – probably of LM III date – once existed in the room. Unfortunately, it was too badly preserved or eroded to be clearly identifiable. If one considers the situation in room 4.16 with this hypothesis in mind, it seems plausible to admit that the same later floor may have existed here too. This is further corroborated by the discovery, in the neighboring room 4.15, of such a higher floor surface which produced the very rich floor deposit described above.

29The fill also produced numerous lithic tools (11-04-1767-OB001-007, 11-04-1772-OB003-010, 11-04-1772-OB012, 11-04-1777-OB001, 11-04-1777-OB003, 11-04-1777-OB006-013, 11-04-1777-OB015-018, 11-04-1790-OB001-002), grinding stone fragments (11-04-1777-OB004 and 11-04-1777-OB014), sherds of stone vases (11-04-1767-OB009-010, 11-04-1777-OB005), and several loom-weights (11-04-1767-OB011, 11-04-1772-OB001, 11-04-1772-OB011, 11-04-1777-OB002, 11-04-1777-OB019). When excavated, the niche showed the same fill layer which contained two loom-weights (11-04-3638-OB001 and 11-04-3645-OB001), an odd stone object (11-04-3641-OB001), and a stone tool (11-04-3645-OB002).

Fig. 4.39. ROOM 4.17 UNDER EXCAVATION (Q. LETESSON)

  • 14 During excavation, it was tentatively suggested that this situation may have been related to the fa (...)

30When the fill was removed, a clay floor of an orange-reddish color was uncovered. It was well preserved in the eastern half of the room but, apart from sporadic patches, it was almost entirely gone in the western half14. This clay floor did not run beneath walls D50 and D52 and does not seem to have been cut by them so it is possible that they are contemporary. Apart from two loom-weights (11-04-1793-OB002 and 11-04-3601-OB001), two lithic tools (11-04-1793-OB001 and 11-04-1795-OB001) and an obsidian blade (11-04-1793-OB003), the most noticeable discovery made on this earlier floor level was a large surface of red-painted wall plaster fragments, located in the southeast corner of the room (see* on fig. 4.39 for the location). These fragments were found in two or three layers, most of them lying on their reverse side while those of the first layer were upside down (figs 4.40 a-b). The clay floor and these remains of red-painted wall plaster clearly testify of an earlier state of room 4.17, possibly during the Neopalatial period.

31When fully excavated, niche 3.7 appeared to have been made out of a hollow cutting in the bedrock between wall C11 and D54 (fig. 4.41). Along D54, a stone that seemed in situ presents a small depression that may have been a pivot hole: was the small niche shut by a door at some point? A large patch of ashy earth dotted with flecks of charcoal was also identified just to the southeast of the niche (see white arrow on fig. 4.41) and seemed to continue beneath wall C11. Together with the fact that the latter is clearly higher in the stratigraphy than walls D52 and D54, this ashy layer testifies to the fact that, originally, room 4.17 presumably extended further north than in its later LM III state.

Fig. 4.40. A-B: RED-PAINTED WALL PLASTER FRAGMENTS IN THE SOUTHEAST CORNER OF ROOM 4.17 (Q. LETESSON)

Fig. 4.41. NICHE 3.7 (Q. LETESSON)

1.10. Space 4.18

  • 15 It is also the level on which wall D33 rests.
  • 16 Due to its openness towards the south, space 4.18 was originally interpreted as a porch (Sissi II: (...)

32As in rooms 4.16 and 4.17, the LM III floor in Space 4.18 was too badly preserved for it to be securely identifiable. It probably corresponded to the level on which the sherds of a krater with octopus decoration (09-04-0785-OB002) were found squashed, just next to the threshold leading to pillar hall 4.11 (Sissi II: 134-135, fig. 5.76-77)15. It is therefore likely that the levels reached at the end of the 2011 campaign represent an earlier state of the area. Unfortunately, excavation was halted before we were able to delineate space 4.18 or clarify its function16.

33When the western part of the area was excavated, it produced what seemed to be the continuation of the fill encountered in the northeast corner of Zone 5 (Sissi II: 155-157, fig. 6.20). This fill was characterized by very loose earth with many pieces of charcoal, patches of ash, traces of burning and a large number of bone fragments. It also contained a considerable quantity of sherds (fig. 4.42 b), including many fragmentary cups (among which were 11-04-1759-OB004, and 11-04-1763-OB001-004), several lithic tools (11-04-1755-OB001-003), the fragment of a stone vase (11-04-1759-OB001), and a lentoid seal (11-04-1759-OB005) (see Anastasiadou, below). As we progressed towards the north, the nature of the soil changed. It became more yellowish and contained less sherds, testifying to the end of the area covered by the fill (fig. 4.42 a).

Fig. 4.42. A-B: WESTERN PART OF SPACE 4.18 UNDER EXCAVATION (Q. LETESSON)

  • 17 A slab of this street level is actually already showing on fig. 4.43 (see white arrow).

34The extension of the trench towards the dumping area (see above) allowed the east part of Space 4.18 to be excavated. It comprises an area between the baulk visible on fig. 4.42 a and a NE-SW wall, labeled D72, which was uncovered at the eastern limit of the new trench (fig. 4.43). This area was found almost empty with the exception of fragments of a plate (11-04-3640-0B001), a small slab with hollows that may have been a rudimentary kernos (fig. 4.43), as well as, closer to D72, several lithic tools (11-04-3642-OB001, 11-04-3642-OB003 and 11-04-3642-OB005-006), two ‘pot boilers’ (11-04-3642-OB002 and 11-04-3642-OB004) and a broken grinding stone (11-04-3642-OB007). Beyond the alignment of wall D71 (see dotted line on fig. 4.43), what was originally considered as the eastern part of Space 4.18 became the southern part of the street level 4.20 (see below)17.

Fig. 4.43. EASTERN PART OF SPACE 4.18 UNDER EXCAVATION AND POTENTIAL KERNOS (Q. LETESSON)

  • 18 The situation is particularly confusing in this area: D56 is nothing more than a 1.90 m stretch of (...)

35At the end of this last campaign, the nature of space 4.18 remains elusive. As mentioned, the LM III levels of Building CD are badly preserved in this area, perhaps a result of earlier excavations or war-time intrusions (see above). If one considers (1) the lack of clear limits to the south and east of the area, (2) the fact that in an earlier phase its eastern half was occupied by the slabs of a street, (3) the continuation of the fill deposit identified in the northeast corner Zone 5, and (4) the presence of a hypothetical kernos often associated with transitional spaces or practices (Chapouthier 1928: 317; Pelon 1980: 191, n. 1; Soles 1992: 219, 222-223), it may perhaps be argued that space 4.18 was an open space directly outside Building CD. In this case, the southern façade would have made a recess with a direct entrance, marked by a sidheropetra threshold, to the pillar hall 4.11 and, possibly a more modest opening towards room 4.1218.

1.11. Space 4.19

36The 2.50 m² test opened in the corner between facades D55 and D3 was considerably extended during the 2011 campaign and labeled space 4.19. This test finally covered an area of ca 9 m² (figs 4.44 a-b). The original test brought to light a very clear fire destruction provisionally dated to the Neopalatial period. It included a broken storage vessel (10-04-1730-OB001) of which the lower part still contained burnt peas or lentils (Sissi II: 103-104, figs 5.22-23). This fire destruction layer was revealed throughout the extension of the original test. It represented a single destructive event which sealed a floor deposit which is described below. The fire destruction level constituted a very hard and thick – some 0.90 m in depth – reddish layer comprising stones of various sizes, decayed mudbricks, fragments of mud-bricks and architectural elements (such as ammouda slabs and fragmentary ashlar blocks, see fig. 4.44 b, or even a stone with a pivot hole), fragments of wall plaster, pumice, several pieces of tarrazza floor or ceiling, as well as many dark patches of burnt material, countless pieces of charcoal, remains of charred wood, and, locally, burnt peas/lentils closer to the location of the storage vessel found in 2010. It also yielded several lithic tools (11-04-1778-OB001, 11-04-1778-OB003-004, 11-04-1781-OB002-003, 11-04-1791-OB001, 11-04-3603-OB001-002), a loom-weight (11-04-1778-OB002), a stone vase fragment (11-04-1781-OB001), but also more sherds of the painted vessel that contained the burnt peas (10-04-1730-OB001).

Fig. 4.44. A-B: TEST IN SPACE 4.19–EXCAVATION IN PROGRESS (Q. LETESSON)

37At the bottom of this fire destruction level, traces of burnt flecks of schist, patches of domatochoma and numerous small to medium sized stones appeared, probably remains of roofing material. Below was a floor deposit that also bore the traces of a heavy fire (figs 4.45 a-b). It contained some pithos fragments (11-04-3680-OB017), 17 conical cups (11-04-3680-OB004-009, 11-04-3680-OB019, 11-04-3680-OB022-024, 11-04-3680-OB026, 11-04-3680-OB028, 11-04-3680-OB031, and 11-04-3680-OB033-035), five ogival cups (11-04-3680-OB002, 11-04-3680-OB010, 11-04-3680-OB014, 11-04-3680-OB018, and 11-04-3680-OB032), five other cups (11-04-3680-OB011-012, 11-04-3680-OB016, 11-04-3680-OB025, and 11-04-3680-OB029), two larger containers: one closed (11-04-3680-OB001), one open (11-04-3680-OB003), a loom-weight (11-04-3680-OB015), a lithic tool (11-04-3680-OB021), a sidheropetra slab (11-04-3680-OB027), a broken grinding stone (11-04-3680-OB030), and a terracotta slab (11-04-3680-OB020).

38At the end of the season, we only managed to remove the deposit but the floor level per se was not yet reached. Bedrock is, however, appearing in the southeast corner of the test and some small roots running through the destruction deposit suggest that a floor level, if preserved, is probably very close to the level at which we stopped the excavation. Furthermore, at this stage, in the southwest corner of the trench, two stone ‘pillars’ of about 1.10 m high became apparent in the west section (figs 4.46 a-b). They stand all the height of the sounding and their upper part was already showing when the area was first explored in 2007 (Sissi II: 129-130, figs 6.21-22). It is possible that these pillars may have framed a stairway leading down into Space 4.19 which may then be regarded as a basement.

Fig. 4.45. DESTRUCTION DEPOSIT IN SPACE 4.19 – WEST PART (A) AND EAST PART (B) (Q. LETESSON)

Fig. 4.46. A-B: STONE ‘PILLARS’ IN THE SOUTHWEST CORNER OF SPACE 4.19 (Q. LETESSON)

1.12. Corridor 4.21

39Corridor 4.21 (ca. 9 m E-W x 1.25 m N-S; 11.25 m²) is the main transitional space in Building CD (fig. 4.1-5; figs 4.47 a-b). It is bounded by platform 3.2 to the east, by walls C7, C9, C14, C23 and C13 to the north, and by walls C8, C11, C17 as well as C15 to the south. This passageway connects several rooms that constitute the central part of the building and must therefore have been an essential component of the circulation patterns within it. To the west, its leads to room 3.6 (see Gaignerot, this volume); to the north, it opens onto a small space that precedes the shrine 3.8 (Sissi II: 89-92; Gaignerot, this volume); and, to the south, it gives access to rooms 3.3 (Sissi I: 121-122) and the pillar hall 4.11 (Sissi II: 121-126).

Fig. 4.47. CORRIDOR 4.21 – EAST PART WITH DEPOSIT (A) AND WEST PART (B) (Q. LETESSON)

  • 19 When it became obvious that the so-called room 3.2 was actually part of a larger corridor, the latt (...)
  • 20 Among these fallen architectural elements, a fine ammouda block with one of its face covered with p (...)

40The area was first cleaned during the 2008 campaign, when the top soil was removed and the eastern end of the corridor was originally identified as room 3.2 (Sissi I: 121; fig. 6.11; see also Sissi II: 126, fig. 5.60 for the platform)19. While excavating the corridor, it became clear that a large quantity of medium to large-sized stones and blocks had fallen in it20. Once removed, we quickly reached an uneven floor surface throughout the corridor. It was made of hard-packed earth and, locally, patches of pebble surface and roughly flattened bedrock. In its eastern part, this floor surface produced a small deposit of vessels that clearly was crushed by the stone tumble (figs 4.47 a and 4.48). It contained at least two fragmentary stirrup jars (11-04-3668-OB001 and 11-04-3668-OB007), the sherds of two different pithoi (11-04-3668-OB002 and 11-04-3668-OB006), the upper part of a lentoid flask (11-04-3668-OB005), an obsidian blade (11-04-3651-OB002), a sidheropetra slab (11-04-3668-OB003), two grinding stone fragments (11-04-3651-OB001 and 11-04-3668-OB010), a complete ammouda quern (11-04-3668-OB004) and a fragmentary one (11-04-3670-OB003), two lithic tools (11-04-3651-OB003 and 11-04-3668-OB009), a stone object (11-04-3651-OB004), a small stone ball (11-04-3670-OB001), a stone weight (11-04-3670-OB002), and a fragment of stalactite (11-04-3670-OB004). Further to the west, we also found a stone pestle (11-04-3676-OB001), a loom-weight (11-04-3663-OB001) next to feature C25 and, along wall C17, another small stone ball (11-04-3667-OB001), a stone weight (11-04-3667-OB003) and a conical cup (11-04-3667-OB004).

  • 21 Although the existence of a narrow opening of some sort – maybe a window – in this location cannot (...)
  • 22 The fact that the last course of these walls was slightly higher than the floor surface could be ex (...)
  • 23 After a closer examination, it appeared that wall C25 was actually resting on the mentioned floor s (...)

41Excavating corridor 4.21 also allowed us to clarify certain issues related to neighboring walls and features. As one can see on fig. 4.48, it seems now even more unlikely that the small gap identified between walls C7 and C9 in the southwest corner of room 4.14 (Sissi II: 130, n. 30) could have been a door21. Further to the west, when the tumble was removed to the south of 3.8, a small portion of a wall was traced and provisionally labeled D77 (figs 4.47 b and 4.49 b). It seemed to be connected to C14 and both walls were constructed on a slightly higher level than the floor surface identified in the corridor22. In the western part of the corridor, two earlier – presumably Neopalatial – walls running on an E-W axis were also uncovered. The first one, feature C25, already identified in 2008 and probably part of an earlier structure (Sissi I: 123), may have been used as a kind of platform or bench within corridor 4.2123. The second one, D78 was found just beneath the badly preserved wall C17 which, like D77, was already floating when the floor surface was discovered in the corridor (fig. 4.48 a). It ran for about 3.50 m along wall C15 and stopped in the southeast corner of room 3.6. Lying just in between walls C17 and C25, in the middle of the corridor, an ammouda block, upside down, showed a concave face that may have been used as a grinding stone (fig. 4.49).

Fig. 4.48. DEPOSIT IN EAST PART OF CORRIDOR 4.21 (L. MANOUSOGIANNAKI)

Fig. 4.49. SPACE 4.21: WALL D17 AND EARLIER WALL D78 (A) AND WALL D77 (B) (Q. LETESSON)

Fig. 4.50. AMMOUDA BLOCK WITH CONCAVE FACE (GRINDING STONE) (Q. LETESSON)

2. Surrounding spaces and external areas

  • 24 For earlier tests in surrounding areas of Building CD, see Sissi II: 136-141.

42Some tests were also conducted in the immediate vicinity of Building CD24.

2.1. Area 4.20

43While opening a 2.50 m wide test to find the eastern limit of rooms 4.12-13 and space 4.18 (see above), the continuation of the street excavated in 2008 and 2009 further to the northeast (Sissi I: 137-138, fig. 6.33 and Sissi II: 136-139, figs 5.79-80) was located. It stretches for about 7 m along room 4.12 and into space 4.18 (fig. 4.50). The excavation area labeled 4.20 also extended further north and brought information on the eastern limit of room 4.13 and the existence of an earlier wall with a N-S alignment.

Fig. 4.51. AERIAL VIEW OF THE STREET 8.1 & 4.20 (C. GASTON)

  • 25 This layer was also uncovered in the eastern part of space 4.18.
  • 26 The ceramic material is quite fragmentary and rolled. It mostly contained Neopalatial and LM III sh (...)

44The first part of area 4.20 to be excavated was situated directly to the east of wall D71. As mentioned in the description of room 4.12, we firstly encountered traces of an older dump or backfill, perhaps from earlier excavations or intrusions25. Once this layer – still visible in the eastern baulk – was removed, we reached a thick level of friable grayish brown earth mixed with pebbles and small rolled sherds that, once excavated, revealed the slabs of the street level (fig. 4.51)26. The level directly on the street was also characterized by the presence of burnt mud-brick and tiny plaster fragments and comprised a lithic tool (11-04-3646-OB001), a broken grinding stone (11-04-3646-OB002), and a fragment of a fishing net weight (11-04-3653-OB001). Along wall D71, where no slabs were found, the soil was harder and much more compact; at the level of room 4.13, this destruction level was reddish brown, contained more medium- to large-sized stones and became gradually harder as we progressed towards the north (see room 4.13 above).

Fig. 4.52. EXCAVATION IN PROCESS IN AREA 4.20 – DESTRUCTION AND STREET LEVELS (Q. LETESSON)

  • 27 Preliminary studies give a MM II date for most of the material in both fine and coarse wares with p (...)

45As in area 8.1, the street level was made of irregular slabs of various sizes embedded in hard-packed earth and, locally, of roughly flattened bedrock. The street continues south where it disappears in the baulk of the test but clearly continues towards Zone 5. It became obvious that wall D72 in the east part of space 4.18 formed a clear limit for the street of which the slabs are set against it (fig. 4.52 a). There, the pavement also curves towards the west and the street may give the impression to widen slightly. Given the absence of slabs on a ca 0.70 m wide band along D71, a test was conducted to determine if a drain may have existed there (fig. 4.53 a). This layer produced a considerable amount of ceramic material27, small- to medium-sized stones, as well as several lithic tools (11-04-3673-OB002-003, 11-04-3677-OB001-002, and 11-04-3679-OB003), a stone vase fragment (11-04-3673-OB001), and two loom-weights (11-04-3679-OB001-002). Even if there was no conclusive evidence for the existence of a drain at this location, the test revealed the existence of an earlier wall beneath D71 that seems to extend towards the north (see below) and also exposed the foundation level of the street (fig. 4.53 b). The latter appeared to have been made of medium- to large-sized stones and slabs, resting on an irregular layer of boulders and wedged into place by packed earth and smaller stones.

  • 28 Its masonry nonetheless recalls that of wall H1 that may have formed the south limit of a portion o (...)
  • 29 The southern boulder is also in the alignment of wall D36 of which the eastern part is particularly (...)

46To the east of room 4.13, an earlier wall, labeled D73, was identified beneath the destruction level. Its upper course is at the same level as the slabs of the street and it is probably the continuation of the wall discovered beneath D71. At the present stage of excavation it is still impossible to determine its relation to the street or to other structures in the area28. While the northern part of area 4.20 was excavated, two large boulders were identified (see white arrows on fig. 4.52 b). The northern one was protruding out of the latest floor level of room 4.13 and both went all the way till the level of the upper course of D7329. Hypothetically, they may represent all that is left of the eastern wall of room 4.13.

Fig. 4.53. AREA 4.20 – SOUTH (A) AND NORTH (B) PARTS (Q. LETESSON)

Fig. 4.54. TEST ALONG D71 – GENERAL VIEW (A) AND SECTION (B) (Q. LETESSON)

2.2. Area 8.4

47Area 8.4 (3.10 x 2.40 m; ca 7.50 m²) is located just to the west of room 4.10, in the very northwest angle of Building CD, forming a recess in its façade. It is bordered by walls D48 to the east and D49 to the south (figs 4.54 a-b). At first briefly examined in 2010, the test was then limited to the west by large boulders that may have been part of a modern terrace wall and to the north by a massive tumble comprising blocks, large boulders and medium-to large-sized stones (fig. 4.54 a). During the same season, the tumble level within area 8.4 was excavated (fig. 4.54 b). In 2011, the large blocks to the west were removed and the area slightly extended up to the alignment of the west façade D63, whereas the north part of the tumble was also removed. This sounding was first opened to investigate walls D48 and D49 and to determine if this specific area was of a particular function in relation to Building CD.

Fig. 4.55. AREA 8.4 – 2010 CAMPAIGN – BEFORE (A) AND AFTER (B) EXCAVATION (L. MANOUSOGIANNAKI/Q. LETESSON)

48It quickly became clear that 8.4 formed an external area and no finds were made to clarify its function. The thick and soft layer of yellowish brown silty earth beneath the tumble within space 8.4 recalls the fill that was identified at various locations in the northern part of Building CD (especially in rooms 4.7 to 4.10) (Sissi II: 114). Together with a large number of sherds, this fill also yielded a crude stone cylinder (11-04-3639-OB001), a fragment of a terracotta drain (11-04-3639-SA009), a Neopalatial conical cup (11-04-3674-OB002), a sidheropetra slab (11-04-3674-OB001), but also one half of a white plastered ammouda horns of consecration (11-04-3674-OB003) (fig. 4.55 a).

Fig. 4.56. HALF OF AMMOUDA HORNS OF CONSECRATION (11-04-3674-OB003) (A) AND CONICAL CUP (11-04-3639-OB001) IN SITU (B) (Q. LETESSON)

49Under one of the last courses of wall D48, a conical cup (11-04-3639-OB001), set between the façade stones, may have formed a simple foundation deposit (fig. 4.55 b).

2.3. Destruction level along the west façade

50Part of a destruction level west of façade wall D64, immediately west of room 3.11, was identified during the 2010 campaign (Sissi II: 105, fig. 5.24). In all likelihood the material derives from Building CD and probably fell from a neighboring space down to the foot of the west façade where it was protected by the projecting wall of room 4.7 (figs 4.56 a-b). This reddish brown destruction layer contained a lot of pumice, many small-to medium-sized stones, numerous plaster and mud-brick fragments, as well as a heavy concentration of LM IIIA2/B sherds, some lithic tools (10-04-1748-OB001-002, 11-04-1799-OB001, 11-04-1799-OB004, and 11-04-3632-OB001), the lower part of a vessel with open shape still containing of few bones (11-04-1787-OB001), several champagne cup bases, a bell-shaped cup (11-04-1799-OB006), a deep bowl with dark-on-light decoration (11-04-1799-OB007), a terracotta spool (11-04-1799-OB008) comparable to those found in room 3.6 (see Gaignerot, this volume), the outlet of a terracotta drain or gutter (11-04-1787-OB002), a stone vase fragment (11-04-3632-OB002), but also a small, thin piece of burned clay with several signs inscribed (11-04-1783-OB001) (Driessen, this volume). The excavation made it also clear that façade wall D64 rested directly on the bedrock.

Fig. 4.57. DESTRUCTION LEVEL BEFORE (A) AND DURING (B) EXCAVATION (Q. LETESSON)

3. A Note on the Seals (Maria Anastasiadou)

51Three sealstones were found in Zone 4 during the 2011 campaign: 11-04-1759-OB005 was recovered from a fill containing mostly LM III material, 11-04-3636-OB002 was found in the cleaning of a possible LM III wall and 11-04-1770-OB001 in a certain LM III context (Letesson, this volume). It seems then that 11-04-1770-OB001 was, as also 10-05-1882-OB001 which was recovered from the same building in 2010 (Sissi II: 160-161), either an heirloom or a chance find. 11-04-1759-OB005 and 11-04-3636-OB002 could have been lost or discarded pieces either early or even later in the LM period. 11-04-1770-OB001 and 11-04-3636-OB002 are cut in the same stone and display stylistically similar intaglios. A seal 11-03-0603-OB001 from elsewhere in Building CD shows a similar style and also a lion (see Anastasiadou in Gaignerot, this volume). The fact that it was found in a Neopalatial context verifies the use of such seals in the area in LM I and suggests that the two seals with the animals found in the later contexts were part of the inventories of the building in the LM I period.

  • 30 The stone is dark green with light green and whitish patches.
  • 31 For the spindle, see Müller 2000, 195-198.
  • 32 Compare for example CMS II, 3 no. 198; CMS III nos. 515, 516; CMS VIII no. 142; CMS V Suppl. 1A no. (...)

52Seal 11-04-1759-OB005 is a Late Minoan soft stone lentoid (fig. 4.58)30. The measurements of the seal are: seal faces: 1.20 cm; stringhole: 0.20 cm; maximal thickness: 0.55 cm. The surface of the seal is shiny and slippery as if it had been polished. The motif is cut with tools operated in the horizontal spindle and is moderately abraded31. Part of the seal face is broken away and as a result of this part of the stringhole channel is left open. The seal face displays a star with four (?) arms. Hatching created by sets of vertical and horizontal parallels is placed between the arms. It is not certain whether two antithetical sets of vertical parallels at the wider angles created between the arms are part of the hatching or are meant to be further arms. The seal is dated to LM I. Similar stars with arms created by the combination of two lines set in an angle and a line filling the latter are common in LM I soft stone lentoids32.

Fig. 4.58. SEAL 11-04-1759-OB005 (CHR. PAPANIKOLOPOULOS)

  • 33 Green and with light green patches. The material is the same as that of 11-04-3636-OB002.
  • 34 For the pose compare CMS I no. 492; CMS II, 3 nos. 89, 174; CMS II, 4 nos. 82, 105, 132, 223; CMS I (...)
  • 35 See Müller 1995, 152-156.
  • 36 For some examples, see Müller 1995, 153 fig. 1; 155 fig. 2. For the ‘Leistenstil’, see Müller 1995, (...)
  • 37 For some examples, see Müller 1995, 157 fig. 5, 158.

53Seal 11-04-1770-OB001 is a Late Minoan serpentine lentoid with flat-convex seal faces (fig. 4.59)33. The measurements of the seal are: seal faces: 1.50 x 1.30 (parallel to the stringhole) cm; stringhole: 0.20 cm; maximal thickness: 0.40 cm. Some parts of the intaglio have a milky shade. The seal is moderately abraded whereas part of the intaglio at the waste of the quadruped is worn and thus shallower than the rest. The seal is engraved with hand tools, the eye and perhaps the end of the muzzle are drilled. The intaglio is executed by flat cuts, appears rather soft and is not too deep. One edge of the seal on the side of one stringhole exit is missing. Depicted is a bovine (bull?) in left profile. The animal is shown in a ‘walking’ pose with the back legs ‘standing’ and the front ones ‘galloping’34. The head is directed upwards, the eye is rendered by a dot, and the long tail is folded under the rump. The pose of the animal and the direction of the head are typical for bovines encountered on LM I seals35. However, the animal has no horns which makes it stand out from the remaining depictions of LM bovines. While the underside of the neck is delimited by a ‘band’ which is typical for LM I bovines, the quadruped does not find very good stylistic parallels among the existing bovines depicted in this pose. Most of the latter have an eye rendered by a centred-circle and full bodies in contrast to the Sissi quadruped whose eye is marked by a small dot and whose body is much more slender and rather elongated36. Closer is the execution of the body to that of the animal on CMS IV no. 9 which although not elongated displays a ‘band’ delimiting the underside of the neck, a drilled nose, and a soft and rather flattened intaglio. The pose of the animal is also encountered on LM III bovines although in these examples the head is directed to the back37.

Fig. 4.59. SEAL 11-04-1770-OB001 (CHR. PAPANIKOLOPOULOS)

  • 38 Dark olive green with light green and whitish patches. The material is the same as that of the piec (...)
  • 39 For a similar element, see CMS II, 4 no. 1.
  • 40 See Pini 1995, 194-200.
  • 41 For some examples, see Pini 1995, 194 fig. 1, 197 fig. 4, 198 fig. 5.
  • 42 For some examples, see Pini 1995, 201 fig. 7.

54Seal 11-04-3636-OB002 is a Late Minoan serpentine lentoid with flat-convex seal faces (fig. 4.60)38. The measurements of the seal are: seal faces: 1.55 x 1.45 (parallel to the stringhole) cm; stringhole: 0.25 cm; maximal thickness: 0.45 cm. Some parts of the intaglio (rump and mane) have a milky shade. The seal is abraded and part of the motif (waste, forepart of the body, face, tail and part of the legs) is worn away. The seal is engraved with hand tools, the intaglio is soft and, at least in its abraded condition, shallow. Both stringholes are slightly broken in two opposing edges, one at the side of the seal face and one at the back of the seal. The back of the seal shows scratch marks. Depicted is a seated lion to the left with the head turned to the back. Above the back of the animal at the edge of the seal a short line can be discerned39. Three more lines on the face of the animal are most probably scratches. While the pose of the lion finds good parallels to LM I lions cut in soft stone, the animal does not seem to have had an eye marked by a centred-circle which is typical for these animals40. Stylistically, the Sissi lion fits well within the LM I/II lion repertoire which have rather shallow intaglios, rumps created by the combination of two slightly curving cuts joined in a line, and legs whose claws curve slightly downwards41. Seated lions on LM III seals display only two legs in profile with the front nicked and directed upwards42.

Fig. 4.60. SEAL 11-04-3636-OB002 (CHR. PAPANIKOLOPOULOS)

Bibliographie

4. References

▪ Brogan & Barnard 2011 = T. Brogan & K. Barnard, Household Archaeology at Mochlos: Statistical Recipes from the Late Minoan I Kitchen, in K. Glowacki and N. Vogeikoff-Brogan (eds), STEGA. The Archaeology of Houses and Households in Ancient Crete (Hesperia Supplement 44), The American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Princeton (2011): 185-198.

▪ Chapouthier 1928 = F. Chapouthier, Une table à offrandes au palais de Mallia, BCH 52.1 (1928): 292-323.

▪ Driessen & Farnoux 1993 = J. Driessen & A. Farnoux, Quartier Nu, BCH 117 (1993): 675-682.

▪ Driessen et al. 2008 = J. Driessen, H. Fiasse, M. Devolder, P. Hacigüzeller & Q. Letesson, Recherches spatiales au Quartier Nu à Malia (MR III), Creta Antica 9 (2008): 93-110.

▪ Hallager & Hallager 2011 = E. Hallager & B. Hallager, The Greek-Swedish Excavations at the Agia Aikaterini Square Kastelli, Khania 1970-1987 and 2001, Vol. IV: 1, The Late Minoan IIIB1 and IIIA2 Settlements, Stockholm (2011).

▪ Maeir & Hitchcock 2011 = A.M. Maeir & L.A. Hitchcock, Absence makes the Hearth grow fonder. Searching for the origins of the Philistine Hearth, in J. Aviram et al. (eds), Amnon Ben-Tor Volume (Eretz Israel. Archaeological, Historical, and Geographical Studies 30), Jerusalem (2011), 46-64.

▪ Müller 1995 = W. Müller, Bildthemen mit Rind und Ziege auf den weichsteinsiegeln Kretas. Überlegungen zur Chronologie der spätminoischen Glyptik, in I. Pini & J.-C. Poursat (eds.) Sceaux minoens et mycéniens. IVe symposium international 10-12 septembre 1992, Clermont-Ferrand (CMS Beiheft 5), Berlin, 1995, 151-167.

▪ Müller 2000 = W. Müller, Experimentelle Versuche mit zwei vom Fiedelbogen angetriebenen Geräten zur Bearbeitung von Siegelsteinen, in I. Pini (ed.) Minoisch-mykenische Glyptik. Stil, Ikonographie, Funktion. V. Internationales Siegel-Symposium Marburg, 23.25. September 1999 (CMS Beiheft 5), Berlin, 2000, 195-202.

▪ Pelon 1980 = O. Pelon, Le palais de Malia. V (Études crétoises XXV), Paul Geuthner, Paris (1980).

▪ Pini 1995 = I. Pini, Bemerkungen zur Datierung von Löwendarstellungen der spätminoischen Weichsteinglyptik, in I. Pini & J.-C. Poursat (eds.) Sceaux minoens et mycéniens. IVe symposium international 10-12 septembre 1992, Clermont-Ferrand (CMS Beiheft 5), Berlin, 1995, 193-207.

Sissi I = J. Driessen, I. Schoep, F. Carpentier, I. Crevecoeur, M. Devolder, F. Gaignerot-Driessen, H. Fiasse, P. Hacigüzeller, S. Jusseret, C. Langohr, Q. Letesson & A. Schmitt, Excavations at Sissi. Preliminary Report on the 2007-2008 Campaigns (Aegis 1), Presses Universitaires de Louvain (2009).

Sissi II = J. Driessen, I. Schoep, F. Carpentier, I. Crevecoeur, M. Devolder, F. Gaignerot-Driessen, P. Hacigüzeller, V. Isaakidou, S. Jusseret, C. Langohr, Q. Letesson & A. Schmitt, Excavations at Sissi, II. Preliminary Report on the 2009-2010 Campaigns (Aegis 4), Presses Universitaires de Louvain (2011).

▪ Soles 1992 = J. Soles, The Prepalatial Cemeteries at Mochlos and Gournia and the House Tombs of Bronze Age Crete (Hesperia Supplement XXIV), American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Princeton (1992).

▪ Soles et al. 2008 = J. Soles, Mochlos IIA. Period IV. The Mycenean Settlement and Cemetery. The Sites (Pre-

Notes

2 This block was later seen to have a dowel hole.

3 For a general discussion on hearths of various types in the Eastern Aegean (Crete, Cyprus, and Philistia) at the end of the Late Bronze Age and the beginning of the Iron Age, see Maeir and Hitchcock 2011.

4 This would make the hypothesis of a window sill more satisfactory than a door.

5 On fig. 4.28, the stones marked with a white * could be all that is left of this badly preserved threshold.

6 This spool is a roughly made version of the same kind of object found in an impressive set in room 3.6 (Gaignerot, this volume).

7 It is precisely in this location that part of a sidheropetra slab that had the usual shape and smoothness of a threshold block was visible in the alignment of wall D53 (Sissi II: 133, fig. 5.72; but also fig. 4.32a).

8 This plate was extremely fragile and it seems reasonable to suggest that its paste may have been made that friable and crumbly because of its use as a cooking device.

9 Whether this collapse was the result of a sudden earthquake – which seems more likely – or the progressive decay of the building after its abandonment is still an open question which will require closer examination.

10 For a recent discussion and references on LM III and Minoan hut models, see Hallager & Hallager 2011: 346. Another hut model was also found in Zone 5.3 (Sissi I; 147, n:5)

11 The earth that was found around the pithos fragments was extremely loose wich is consistent with the hypothesis that the large storage vessel was partly sunken in the pit and kept in place with earth packed around it. Possible sherds of another pithos (11-04-3621-OB001) were also found in the pit.

12 This type of kitchen-pantry only opening onto the exterior is also a common phenomenon in LM I (Brogan & Barnard 2011: 197-198).

13 Although most of the material from the fill was dated to EM III-MM IA (Driessen, this volume, fig. 1.3) and LM IA.

14 During excavation, it was tentatively suggested that this situation may have been related to the fact that the material of the fill had been dumped in the room from the west, the initial impact destroying most of the clay floor in this side of room 4.17 before the material was spread over the entire surface.

15 It is also the level on which wall D33 rests.

16 Due to its openness towards the south, space 4.18 was originally interpreted as a porch (Sissi II: 135).

17 A slab of this street level is actually already showing on fig. 4.43 (see white arrow).

18 The situation is particularly confusing in this area: D56 is nothing more than a 1.90 m stretch of wall and we do not know whether walls D33 and D71 – both badly preserved – were connected or not and if an opening may have existed between them (cf. fig. 4.2).

19 When it became obvious that the so-called room 3.2 was actually part of a larger corridor, the latter number was used to identify the platform that constituted its eastern limit.

20 Among these fallen architectural elements, a fine ammouda block with one of its face covered with plaster was found between walls C7 and C9.

21 Although the existence of a narrow opening of some sort – maybe a window – in this location cannot be totally ruled out.

22 The fact that the last course of these walls was slightly higher than the floor surface could be explained by the fact that the Minoans may have thoroughly cleaned the area between the Neopalatial and Postpalatial occupations (for a similar stratigraphical observation in contemporary Quartier Nu at Malia, see Driessen & Farnoux 1993: 681). Further stratigraphical analysis and architectural studies are necessary to determine if wall D77 might not simply have been a later addition, however. If this is the case, corridor 4.21 would have widened till the south wall of 3.8 in an earlier phase, between walls C9 and C23, hence forming a regular room instead of a passageway.

23 After a closer examination, it appeared that wall C25 was actually resting on the mentioned floor surface of the corridor. Earlier walls slightly protruding from later floors were identified in room 4.14 (Sissi II: 130-131, fig. 5.69) and 4.16 (see above) and similarly interpreted as work platforms.

24 For earlier tests in surrounding areas of Building CD, see Sissi II: 136-141.

25 This layer was also uncovered in the eastern part of space 4.18.

26 The ceramic material is quite fragmentary and rolled. It mostly contained Neopalatial and LM III sherds and probably constituted a secondary deposit (fill). The presence of LM III pottery on the street level in area 4.20 contrasts with its almost total absence in the destruction level that covered the street in area 8.1 which produced MM II-LM I ceramics (Sissi II: 136-137). This seems to indicate that this new portion of the street (area 4.20) may have remained in use.

27 Preliminary studies give a MM II date for most of the material in both fine and coarse wares with possible later (LM III) intrusions. This MM II date would be consistent with the dating proposed for the construction of the street in area 8.1 (Sissi II: 137).

28 Its masonry nonetheless recalls that of wall H1 that may have formed the south limit of a portion of the street in area 8.1 (Sissi II: 137).

29 The southern boulder is also in the alignment of wall D36 of which the eastern part is particularly badly preserved.

30 The stone is dark green with light green and whitish patches.

31 For the spindle, see Müller 2000, 195-198.

32 Compare for example CMS II, 3 no. 198; CMS III nos. 515, 516; CMS VIII no. 142; CMS V Suppl. 1A no. 389.

33 Green and with light green patches. The material is the same as that of 11-04-3636-OB002.

34 For the pose compare CMS I no. 492; CMS II, 3 nos. 89, 174; CMS II, 4 nos. 82, 105, 132, 223; CMS III nos. 417, 419, 427; CMS IV nos. 281, 300; CMS VI nos. 410, 411; CMS VII no. 193; CMS VIII no. 126.

35 See Müller 1995, 152-156.

36 For some examples, see Müller 1995, 153 fig. 1; 155 fig. 2. For the ‘Leistenstil’, see Müller 1995, 152-154. For the depiction of a bovine (?) shown without horns and with a tail also delimiting the underside of the rump, see CMS II, 4 no. 90.

37 For some examples, see Müller 1995, 157 fig. 5, 158.

38 Dark olive green with light green and whitish patches. The material is the same as that of the piece 11-04-1770-OB001.

39 For a similar element, see CMS II, 4 no. 1.

40 See Pini 1995, 194-200.

41 For some examples, see Pini 1995, 194 fig. 1, 197 fig. 4, 198 fig. 5.

42 For some examples, see Pini 1995, 201 fig. 7.

Table des illustrations

Légende Fig. 4.19. MM II CARINATED CUP IN THE FOUNDATION DEPOSIT BETWEEN C1 AND D11 (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.20. A-B: TUMBLE IN THE SOUTHWEST CORNER OF ROOM 4.7 AND FLOOR DEPOSIT (SEE ARROWS–Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.21. ROMM 4.7: A-B: PLATFORM (?) ALONG WALL D63 (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.22. ROOM 4.7: DEPOSIT IN THE CORNER BETWEEN WALLS D49 AND D63 (Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-4.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.23. NORTHERN PART OF ROOM 4.7 WITH HYPOTHETICAL FLOOR SURFACE (WHITE ARROWS) AND FILL AREA (Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-5.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.24. ROOM 4.7: HEARTH D75 AND SURROUNDINGS (Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-6.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.25. ENTRANCE BETWEEN WALLS D17 AND D27, SOUTHEAST CORNER OF ROOM 4.7 (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.26. A-B: NORTHEAST AND SOUTHEAST CORNERS OF ROOM 4.8 (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.27. PIT IN THE SOUTHWEST CORNER OF ROOM 4.11 (M. PIETROVITO)
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Légende Fig. 4.28. DOORWAY WITH ROBBED OUT THRESHOLD (?) BETWEEN ROOM 4.11 AND 4.17 (Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-10.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.29. SPACE 4.12 UNDER EXCAVATION AND FRAGMENTS OF A DRAIN 11-04-3628-OB001 (Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-11.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.30. A. LENTOID SEAL 11-04-3636-OB001. B. STONE OBJECT 11-04-3636-OB002 (CHR. PAPANIKOLOPOULOS)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-12.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.31. ROOM 4.13 UNDER EXCAVATION (Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-13.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.32. A-D: DESTRUCTION DEPOSIT IN ROOM 4.15 – EXCAVATION STEPS (Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-14.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.33. A-B: COOKING AREA IN ROOM 4.15 (A-B) AND ASSOCIATED PIT (B) (Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-15.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.34. A-B: PIT IN THE NORTHWEST CORNER OF ROOM 4.15 (Q. LETESSON)
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Fichier image/jpeg, 148k
Légende Fig. 4.35. ROOM 15: A-B: HUT MODEL (11-04-1789-OB003) (A) AND MINIATURE VESSEL SET (11-04-1794-OB001, 11-04-1761-OB002 AND 11-04-1766-OB001) (B) (CHR. PAPANIKOLOPOULOS/G. MCGUIRE)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-17.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.36. A-B: PIT IN THE NORTHWEST CORNER OF ROOM 4.15 (REMAINS OF LIMPETS AND SEA-URCHINS) (Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-18.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.37. NEST OF LITHIC TOOLS ALONG D69 (Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-19.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.38. ROOM 4.16 AT THE END OF ITS EXCAVATION (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.39. ROOM 4.17 UNDER EXCAVATION (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.40. A-B: RED-PAINTED WALL PLASTER FRAGMENTS IN THE SOUTHEAST CORNER OF ROOM 4.17 (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.41. NICHE 3.7 (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.42. A-B: WESTERN PART OF SPACE 4.18 UNDER EXCAVATION (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.43. EASTERN PART OF SPACE 4.18 UNDER EXCAVATION AND POTENTIAL KERNOS (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.44. A-B: TEST IN SPACE 4.19–EXCAVATION IN PROGRESS (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.45. DESTRUCTION DEPOSIT IN SPACE 4.19 – WEST PART (A) AND EAST PART (B) (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.46. A-B: STONE ‘PILLARS’ IN THE SOUTHWEST CORNER OF SPACE 4.19 (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.47. CORRIDOR 4.21 – EAST PART WITH DEPOSIT (A) AND WEST PART (B) (Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-29.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.48. DEPOSIT IN EAST PART OF CORRIDOR 4.21 (L. MANOUSOGIANNAKI)
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Légende Fig. 4.49. SPACE 4.21: WALL D17 AND EARLIER WALL D78 (A) AND WALL D77 (B) (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.50. AMMOUDA BLOCK WITH CONCAVE FACE (GRINDING STONE) (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.51. AERIAL VIEW OF THE STREET 8.1 & 4.20 (C. GASTON)
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Légende Fig. 4.52. EXCAVATION IN PROCESS IN AREA 4.20 – DESTRUCTION AND STREET LEVELS (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.53. AREA 4.20 – SOUTH (A) AND NORTH (B) PARTS (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.54. TEST ALONG D71 – GENERAL VIEW (A) AND SECTION (B) (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.55. AREA 8.4 – 2010 CAMPAIGN – BEFORE (A) AND AFTER (B) EXCAVATION (L. MANOUSOGIANNAKI/Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-37.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.56. HALF OF AMMOUDA HORNS OF CONSECRATION (11-04-3674-OB003) (A) AND CONICAL CUP (11-04-3639-OB001) IN SITU (B) (Q. LETESSON)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-38.jpg
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Légende Fig. 4.57. DESTRUCTION LEVEL BEFORE (A) AND DURING (B) EXCAVATION (Q. LETESSON)
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Légende Fig. 4.58. SEAL 11-04-1759-OB005 (CHR. PAPANIKOLOPOULOS)
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Légende Fig. 4.59. SEAL 11-04-1770-OB001 (CHR. PAPANIKOLOPOULOS)
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Légende Fig. 4.60. SEAL 11-04-3636-OB002 (CHR. PAPANIKOLOPOULOS)
URL http://books.openedition.org/pucl/docannexe/image/2899/img-42.jpg
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