The New Swedish Cyprus Expedition 2021 and 2022

2023-11-06

Front cover of Opuscula. Annual of the Swedish Institutes at Athens and Rome (OpAthRom) 16, Stockholm 2023. ISSN: 2000-0898. ISBN: 978-91-977799-5-1. Softcover, 268 pages. https://doi.org/10.30549/opathrom-16Opuscula 16 is published by the Swedish Institutes at Athens and Rome. Distributed by Eddy.se AB. View volume at ERIH PLUS. All content available with open access.

The New Swedish Cyprus Expedition (The Söderberg Expedition): Excavations at Hala Sultan Tekke autumn 2021 and spring 2022. Preliminary results

By Peter M. Fischer & Teresa Bürge with contributions by Rainer Feldbacher, Kirsi O. Lorentz, Bianca Casa, Natalie M. Branca, Yuko Miyauchi, Sila Kayalp, Maria Nectaria Antoniou, Svetlana Gasanova, Valentina Vassallo, Rahaf Orabi, Panagiotis Ioannou & Sorin Hermon

Abstract

In 2021 and 2022, the 13th and 14th seasons of excavations at the Late Bronze Age site of Hala Sultan Tekke were carried out in Area A, and as a result of these investigations numerous tombs were found. These tombs were threatened by farming. Four magnetic anomalies, indicated in the 2017 survey magnetometer map, were investigated. They represent three tombs, L198, TT, and UU, and the probable Offering Pit SS-S. The minimum number of individuals (MNI) in Pit Tomb L198, which contains only secondary burials, is six. They are associated with 21 ceramic vessels of which a few were imported from Anatolia. Chamber Tomb TT was completely excavated and contained a minimum of 25 individuals and 78 objects. Among these are 47 ceramic vessels of which a few are from the Mycenaean sphere of culture. Other mortuary gifts are various objects of metal, faience, carnelian, haematite, and rock crystal in addition to three scarabs. The incompletely excavated large (Chamber?) Tomb UU contained, so far, a minimum of 19 individuals and 140 objects. They comprise 124 ceramic vessels including numerous Late Helladic, Late Minoan, and Anatolian pottery. Other finds are bronze and gold jewellery, the latter including a diadem, and a duck-shaped ivory box from the same context as Egyptian-imported vessels of calcite. None of the tombs and the offering pit, which can all be roughly dated to the 14th century BC, were looted. The special arrangements of the human bones in Chamber Tomb TT and the multitude of imported materials in Tomb UU offer additional insights into complex Late Cypriot mortuary practices and the far-reaching interregional connections of the urban élites of Hala Sultan Tekke.

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Bibliographical information

Peter M. Fischer & Teresa Bürge et al., ‘The New Swedish Cyprus Expedition (The Söderberg Expedition): Excavations at Hala Sultan Tekke autumn 2021 and spring 2022. Preliminary results’, Opuscula. Annual of the Swedish Institutes at Athens and Rome (OpAthRom) 16, Stockholm 2023, 7-59. ISSN: 2000-0898. ISBN: 978-91-977799-5-1. Softcover, 268 pages. https://doi.org/10.30549/opathrom-16-02

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