The American School of Classical Studies at Athens is pleased to announce the publication of Hesperia 83.3. Topics in this issue include a comparison of the transitional period between EH II and EH III at Lerna and Tiryns, the reconstruction of fragmentary terracotta reliefs found at Helike within the pediment of the site’s Archaic temple, a linguistic analysis of “nonsense” inscriptions on Attic vases depicting Amazons and Scythians, an Agora inscription that extends our knowledge of the Athenian administration of Delos to 330/29–329/8, and a synthetic consideration of all the Italian sigillata stamps currently known from Crete.
Subscribers can read the issue online at JSTOR, which now hosts all current issues of Hesperia as well as an archive of past volumes.
The Early Helladic II–III Transition at Lerna and Tiryns Revisited: Chronological Difference or Synchronous Variability?, by Erika Weiberg and Michael Lindblom, asks whether the differences in the ceramic record for the EH II–III transition at Lerna and Tiryns should be taken to indicate a difference in the chronological periods represented at each site, or a difference in the way that each population reacted to the conditions of that time period. The authors argue for the latter, and propose that at Lerna, the inhabitants were redefining themselves with new cultural elements, while at Tiryns, preserving a sense of continuity took precedence.
Archaic Terracotta Reliefs from Ancient Helike, by Erophile Kolia, presents evidence for an Archaic temple at the site of Helike that most likely continued the cult of the previously known Geometric temple. In addition to roof tiles and other architectural pieces, fragmentary terracotta reliefs were found, including two polychromatic fragments of the head and wing of a sphinx, the tail of another sphinx, and two fragments of winged boots, which probably belonged to a Gorgon in the typical Archaic running pose. The author reconstructs these as the pedimental decoration of the temple with the two sphinxes flanking the central Gorgon.
Making Sense of Nonsense Inscriptions Associated with Amazons and Scythians on Athenian Vases, by Adrienne Mayor, John Colarusso, and David Saunders, demonstrates that some inscriptions on Attic pots that have been traditionally regarded as “nonsense,” are not nonsense at all, but actually represent words from the languages of the Black Sea and Caucasus region that were transliterated into the Greek script. In test cases, inscriptions on pots depicting Amazons and Scythians were deciphered, but nonsense inscriptions from pots without such images remained unintelligible, thus indicating that the positive results are not random.
A Record of the Athenian Administration of Delos: Agora I 5162, by Michael Walbank, presents the editio princeps of Agora I 5162, which records the leases of different types of landholdings on Delos, and a list of several officials, including hieropoioi, epimeletai, nomothetai, and an unknown group called the naopoioi or neopoioi, who are collecting funds for a large project.
Stamps on Italian Sigillata and the Renaissance of Aptera, Crete, by Martha Bowsky, presents not only 39 new Italian sigillata stamps found at Aptera, but also all of the stamps currently known from Crete in a series of tables and an appendix. The author discusses the provenience and chronological profiles of the stamps in order to provide an enhanced understanding of Crete’s position in the trade patterns of the Mediterranean during the 1st and 2nd centuries A.D.
Current subscribers can view the issue online at JSTOR. The printed version will be mailed shortly.
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