A Square of Blue
This is the view from the bottom of our sounding at Kouphovouno (excavated 2003 and 2005). It was about 5 metres deep, straight down into the ground and only 2 x 2 m wide. Pretty scary sometimes, I can tell you.
Kouphovouno, just outside Sparta, was dug by the University of Liverpool to try and answer the question of the North/South divide of Middle-Late Neolithic (and Early Bronze age) site pattens as the frequency seems to drop dramatically once you get past the middle part of Greece. Then again Sparta has always been a dark and scary place where no self respecting Greek would step… I have way to much of a bias towards the Athenians dont I? In the modern day Im too much like England from Hetalia and Athens from Harpo’s Ancient Greek comics.
Anyway, back to informing you, the aims of the project were primarily to:
- 1. Refine the dating framework by establishing a stratigraphic sequence for the MN, LN, FN and EH periods with 14C. (Ha! As does everyone who digs in Greece!)
- 2. Investigate the technology of architecture, and organisation of domestic space
- 3. Collect environmental evidence to model the subsistence economy and natural setting
- 4. Undertake scientific analysis of ceramic and lithic technologies for information on exchange and craft specialisation
- 5. Recover human remains and study their funerary context
- 6. Study geomorphology and tell formation processes as a control on survey and excavation results and to throw light on changes in the environment
- 7. Compare the distribution of surface remains with excavated evidence
- So some pretty interesting stuff (if you don’t think to hard about 14C). And this particular hole in the ground went to natural soil giving a great stratigraphic sequence of the site, something not always done (or able to be done) at sites of its type (Whitley J., Germanidou S., Urem-Kotsou D., et al. p.39). A wealth of pottery and grains will help establish some answers to 4, 6, and other questions have been or being addressed in the continuing excavation.
(Photo by hunting bear; Archaeology in Greece 2005-2006 Whitley J., Germanidou S., Urem-Kotsou D., Dimoula A., Nikolakopoulou I., Karnava A., and Hatzaki E., Archaeological Reports, No. 52 (2005–2006), pp.1-112)