|UND history professor, team of archaeologists complete sixth season in Cyprus|
A University of North Dakota history professor and a team of fellow archaeologists recently completed their sixth season of fieldwork on an ancient settlement on the Mediterranean island nation of Cyprus.
The Pyla-Koutsopetria Archaeological Project (PKAP), under the direction of UND Professor William Caraher, Professor R. Scott Moore (Indiana University of Pennsylvania), Professor David K. Pettegrew (Messiah College), and Maria Hadjicosti (Cyprus Department of Antiquities), took part in its latest fieldwork between May 15 and June 25, on the site of Pyla-Koutsopetria on Cyprus. A team of undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty members from universities in the U.S. and Europe assisted in the effort.
For the past five years, PKAP primarily was concerned with the archaeological remains present on the ground. The goal of this fieldwork was to collect data without disturbing the archaeological remains protected beneath the surface. The results include the discovery of what may be previously unknown shrine from the Archaic to Classical Periods (600-300 B.C.) and an extensive Roman to Late Roman Periods (100 B.C.-700 A.D.) settlement.
During the team's most recent fieldwork, PKAP conducted limited excavations, for the first time, in large part, to confirm and expand the results of the surface survey. A series of small trenches brought to light the remains of a fortified settlement on a prominent coastal ridge called "Vigla." This settlement appears to have been occupied from the Cypro-Archaic to the Hellenistic Periods (600-100 B.C.). The most dramatic feature of this settlement was a fortification wall that ringed the entire plateau. UND's Caraher and the PKAP team think it's probable the shrine of the same date served this small community.
Nearby, the PKAP team excavated three small soundings near the known site of "Kokkinokremos." This work expanded the extent of this Late Bronze Age site (circa 1200 B.C.) The team based this conclusion on the discovery of a wall that was datable to the Late Bronze Age and that was located considerably outside the area of use proposed by earlier studies.
The six seasons of fieldwork in the region of Pylons-Koutsopetria have revealed a dynamic and wealthy Mediterranean landscape filled with towns, fortifications and religious centers. The careful documentation of this material is particularly important as more of the Cypriot coastline succumbs to development.
The project enjoyed the generous assistance of the Estate Manager of the British Sovereign Area - Dhekelia Garrison, the Larnaka District Archaeological Museum, and the Cyprus American Archaeological Research Institute.
The 2008 season’s fieldwork was funded by grants from UND, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Messiah College, American Schools of Oriental Research, Institute for Aegean Prehistory, the Brennan Foundation, the Mediterranean Archaeological Trust, and generous private donors. All fieldwork was completed with the permission and cooperation of Pavlos Flourentzos, director of the Department of Antiquities in Cyprus.
The daily activities of the Pylons-Koutsopetria Archaeological Project were chronicled on a series of blogs which have had thousands of readers from around the world:
We have also used video and podcasts to bring the archaeology of the Mediterranean world to a wider audience:
More information on the Pylons-Koutsopetria Archaeological Project is available at www.pkap.org, or contact William Caraher at email@example.com