Maritime Networks in the Mycenaean World by Thomas F. Tartaron

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By Thomas F. Tartaron

During this booklet, Thomas F. Tartaron provides a brand new and unique reassessment of the maritime international of the Mycenaean Greeks of the past due Bronze Age. by means of all bills a seafaring humans, they loved maritime connections with peoples as far away as Egypt and Sicily. those long-distance kin were celebrated and masses studied; in contrast, the colourful worlds of neighborhood maritime interplay and exploitation of the ocean were nearly overlooked. Dr. Tartaron argues that neighborhood maritime networks, within the kind of “coastscapes” and “small worlds,” are way more consultant of the real cloth of Mycenaean existence. He bargains an entire template of conceptual and methodological instruments for recuperating small worlds and the groups that inhabited them. Combining archaeological, geoarchaeological, and anthropological methods with old texts and community idea, he demonstrates the applying of this scheme in numerous case reports. This publication provides new views and demanding situations for all archaeologists with pursuits in maritime connectivity.

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It is worth considering instead that the Mycenaeans were able to obtain the commodities they wanted most – Cypriot copper, tin from further east, luxury materials such as ivory – from visiting Eastern ships or by sailing to emporia on Cyprus or the northern Syrian coast, which served as collection points for products from far and wide. In these circumstances, the Mycenaeans may have had little need to make direct voyages to Egypt, which accordingly would have been infrequent. Mechanisms of Trade From the evidence outlined above, it becomes apparent that Mycenaean extraAegean transactions involved a diversity of settings, participants, and mechanisms of transfer.

Recently, scholars have reassessed the evidence and increasingly asserted the existence of palatial and nonpalatial sectors of the economy. In reality, these were not entirely separate, non-intersecting realms of activity, but in certain areas of agriculture and craft production the palaces may have shown little interest or exerted little control (Galaty 1999; Halstead 1992a, 1992b, 1999, 2001; Parkinson 1999). Commodities produced from ubiquitous sources, such as pottery and marine products, may have circulated in independent, local markets (Hruby 2006; Knappett 2001; Palaima 1997; Whitelaw 2001a).

The seemingly narrow distribution of imports in the Aegean may be the result of a deliberate strategy on the part of elites to control quantities as well as content, because exotic objects lose their power when they are widely distributed. As might be expected, the cumulative evidence favors neither of the extreme ends of the minimalist/maximalist spectrum. With recent research highlighting limits on the control that palaces could exert geographically and over specific sectors of the economy, it is implausible that all long-distance maritime activity was state sponsored or that there was no scope for merchants to pursue private profit.

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