The period between the collapse of the Mycenaean civilization around 1200 BC and the dawning of the classical era four and half centuries later is widely known as the Dark Age of Greece, not least in the eponymous history by A. M. Snodgrass published by EUP in 1971, and reissued by the Press in 2000. In January 2003 distinguished scholars from all over the world gathered in Edinburgh to re-examine old and new evidence on the period. The subjects of their papers were chosen in advance by the editors so that taken together they would cover the field. This book, based on thirty-three of the presentations, will constitute the most fundamental reinterpretation of the period for 30 years. The authors take issue with the idea of a Greek Dark Age and everything it implies for the understanding of Greek history, culture and society. They argue that the period is characterised as much by continuity as disruption and that the evidence from every source shows a progression from Mycenaean kingship to the conception of aristocratic nobility in the Archaic period.
The volume is divided into six parts dealing with political and social structures; questions of continuity and transformation; international and inter-regional relations; religion and hero cult; Homeric epics and heroic poetry; and the archaeology of the Greek regions. Copiously illustrated and with a collated bibliography, itself a valuable resource, this book is likely to be the essential and basic source of reference on the later phases of the Mycenaean and the Early Greek Iron Ages for many years.
Sigrid Deger-Jalkotzy is Professsor for Ancient History at the University of Salzburg, Austria. Irene Lemos is Reader in Classical Archaeology at Merton College, Oxford
Introduction; Contributors and Editors; Abbreviations; Part I Political and Social Structures; 1 The wanax and the emergence of palatial architecture; James W. Wright; 2 Wanaks and related power terms in Mycenaean and later Greek; Thomas G. Palaima; 3 Mycenaean palatial administration; Cynthia W. Shelmerdine; 4 The subjects of the wanax; John T. Killen; 5 polidis and Antonios Kotsonas; Part IV: Religion and Hero Cult; 18 From kings to demi-gods: Epic heroes and social change c. 750-600.; Hans van Wees; 19 Religion, basileis, and heroes; Carla Antonaccio; 20 Cult activity on Crete in the Early Dark Age: Changes, continuities and the development of a 'Greek' cult system; Anna Lucia D'Agata; Part V: The Homeric Epics and Heroic Poetry; 21 The rise and descent of the language of the Homeric poems; Michael Meier-Brugger; 22 Homer and Oral Poetry; Edzard Visser; 23 Some remarks on the semantics of.
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