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A Dark Age Refuge Centre near Pefki, East Crete Author(s): Krzysztof Nowicki Source: The Annual

A Dark Age Refuge Centre near Pefki, East Crete Author(s): Krzysztof Nowicki

Source: The Annual of the British School at Athens, Vol. 89 (1994), pp. 235-268

Published by: British School at Athens Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/30102572

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A DARK AGE REFUGE CENTRE NEAR PEFKI, EAST CRETE

(PLATES39-42)

lQog

ovg xaToLxoug

Ine1xov

ov xatL ov aytLO6t[tovQO66bQO TOU XWQLOU x. Eqtavovulk Kavapdxli

sites

on Crete.' This exploration of the end of the Bronze Age and the Early Iron Age on the island

has sought (I) to clarify the broader regional context of well-known excavated dark age

settlementssuch as

to establish the location, function,

documented sites;

evidence;(4) to define patterns

island; and (5) to establish understandthis obscure

represented than in other areas of the Aegean,

and explorations

density

of

dark

Crete

the excavated sample of sites. This study of

in the mountainoushinterlandof the island have shown site numbers and a

THIS

paper presents one component

Karphi,

of an

on-going study

of

the topography of dark age

KavousiVrondaand Kastro, Palaikastro Kastri, and Vrokastro;(2)

and chronology

of

chronological and regional patterns that may help us begin to in Crete.2

better

previously discovered but poorly

(3) to augment this catalogue of known dark age remains with new

of settlementand land use for the period in variousareas of the

period on Crete is

The Dark

Age

potentially

of habitation

only vaguely suggested by

age topography

might

has shown the likelihoodthat a more

complete or representativemap for any other period.

representing

dark

age

be drawnfor the Dark Age than

of this

century

three sites

partly

beginning Crete were

explored sites was later complemented by

Pendlebury at Karphi.4 In the I96os new excavations at Palaikastro Kastri revealed

particularly valuable evidence for the problem of the beginning of the Cretan Dark Age.5

At the

defensible settlementsin

excavated:Kavousi Kastro, Vrokastro, and Palaikastro Kastri.3 The list of

a more

comprehensive project

undertaken

by

I

I

am

most

grateful

to

the

Greek archaeological

authorities, in particular Dr K. Davaras, for the permits to

carry out my studies and to draw the plans of the sites

presented here. The work would not be possible without

extremely gracious help

Pefki. First and foremost my thanks go to the mayor of this

for his interest in my

work and for his and his wife's Cretan hospitality. I would

also like to thank

the information he has given about the archaeology and history of the Pefki area, and Mr Nikos Tavladakis for his

hospitality.

Victoria

for many very

to

Batten for improving the English of this paper, and

I would like to express my special thanks to

his brother, Mr Georgios Kanavakis, for all

village, Mr Emmanouil Kanavakis,

and friendship of the inhabitantsof

Donald

Haggis

helpful

comments,

particularlyconcerning the pottery.

2 The problem of defensible sites in Crete, and their distribution and evidence as recorded on the

topography,

surface, will

Crete (LMIII c-Geometric). 3 H. A. Boyd, 'Excavations at Kavousi, Crete, in I9oo',

'Excavations at

Palaikastro I', BSA 8 (I901-2), 286; E. Hall, 'Excavationsin

AJA 5 (1901), 125-57; R. C. Bosanquet,

be presented in the forthcomingDefensible Sitesin

eastern Crete: Vrokastro', Universityof Pennsylvania Museum AnthropologicalPublications,3. 3 (Philadelphia,1914).

4 J. D. S. Pendlebury and M. B. Money-Coutts,

'Excavations in the plain of Lasithi, III: Karphi, a city of

refuge of the early Iron Age in Crete', BSA 38 (1937-8),

57-145.

5 L. H. Sackett, M. R. Popham, and P. M. Warren,

'Excavationsat Palaikastro,VI', BSA6o (1965),269-305.

236

KRZYSZTOF

NOWICKI

Besides material from stratifiedcontexts in settlements, there were short reports or notes on cemeteries (e.g. Erganos, Panagia Prophitis Ilias, Kourtes, Kamares, Siderokephala,Praisos,

Atsipades,Driros,Vronda),6 unexcavatedsettlements (e.g. Zakros Ellinika,Kandilioro,

Ellinika,

Dark Age unearthed

Prophitis Ilias, Elefterna).8 Such Knossos.

after the collapse

Minoan-Mycenaean

resolve some contradictionshe found between differentareas. Additionally, the

the

LM III c, was not yet established.9Nevertheless the list of refuge

proposed by Pendlebury

the definition of

Oreino

Stavrochori

Kastri, Monastiraki)7 and

during the investigations at later sites was the basis

unstratified or very disturbed layers of the

(e.g. Prinias, Ligortino, Panagia

Crete

beyond

for studies of the Dark Age in

of the

Although Pendlebury proposed

post-Minoan period

the reconstruction of events

civilization, he still had too little evidence to support his ideas or to of

chronology

was

very confusing,

and the most

importantaspect,

or defensible settlements

long time,'l and was Pendlebury's work was

and many of the sites seem to have never been visited

books on the Dark

one for a

remained the most

comprehensive

196os and 1970s11

complemented only by

never fully explored by later scholars,

again. Desborough

Age in Greece,

a few sites identified in the

and Snodgrass, when they presented their synthetic

did not include all the identifiedsitesin their discussions.'2

A

new chapter of research on the Cretan Dark Age started with two American projects

areas around Kavousi and Vrokastro.'3The materialfrom the re-excavatedsites

covering the

6

F. Halbherr, 'Cretan expedition, on the researches at

XII:

XI: three Cretan

XIII: the

necropoleis: report

and Kourtes', AJA 5 (1901), 259-93; A. Taramelli,

expedition,

(1901), 294-301; L. Mariani, 'Cretan expedition,

vases of Erganos

Taramelli, 'Cretan expedition,

Camares on Mount Ida',

Erganos, Panagia

'Cretan

notes on the necropolis of Courtes', AJA5

and Courtes', AJA 5 (1901), 302-14; A.

XX: a visit to the grotto of

AJA5 (1901),439-42; A. Taramelli,

'Ricerche archeologiche cretesi', Mon.Linc. 9 (1899),403; F

Halbherr, 'Cretan expedition, XVI: report on the researches

in

Greece, 1900-1901',JHS 21 (1901),399-400; id.

at Praesos, I', BSA 8 (1901-2),

'KplLxij 'ATotatdbagdtpoL', Arch. Eph.1915,48-50; Boyd

at Praesos',AJA5 (1901);

'Excavations

R.

C. Bosanquet, 'Archaeology

231-70; E. Petroulakis,

(n. 3), 131-6.

7 L. Mariani, D. G. Hogarth, (1900-1), 145;J.

'Antichith cretesi', Mon.Linc.6 (1895),293;

BSA 7

D. S. Pendlebury, The Archaeologyof Crete

'Excavations

in Zakro, Crete',

(London, 1939), 178, 290, 385; H. A. Boyd, 'Gournia', Transactions of the DepartmentofArchaeology, FreeMuseum of Science

and Art, University

ofPennsylvania,

i (Philadelphia,1904),17-18.

Pendlebury(n. 7), 313-16.

9

8

Pendlebury often mentioned the sites as Subminoan or

PG, but their contemporaneity with Karphi allows them to

be redatedto LM III c-PG.

0oPendlebury never published a proper list of refuge sites

in dark age Crete, but numerousremarksare scatteredin his

works. " N. Platon, PAE 1956, 239-40;

recherchesde spe16ologie et de topographie

84 (1960),

la Crfte',

cr6toises',BCH

P. Faure, 'Nouvelles

196-219; id., 'Cavernes et sites aux extr6mit6sde

BCH 86 (1962), 39-41; M. S. E Hood and P. M.

Warren, 'Ancient sites in the province of Agios Vasilios, Crete', BSA 61 (1966),178.

example,

Karphi as a

'this site is shown

from many contemporary developments

Dark Age of Greece (Edinburgh, 1971),

'Karphi

Karphi must, as always, be put forward with qualification,

not only because of its general cultural isolation

.' (ibid.

371).

whereas the connection of

were based on a

Karphi with other Cretan centres is supportedby numerous,

much better-grounded

Desborough

isolation', writing that 'One of the most interestingpoints is the evidence provided for close contact with other parts of

Crete, at least for some periods, and also for overseas contacts' (The GreekDark Ages (London, 1972), 127-8).

Desborough

similar to Karphi

when discussing

geographical

too, however, did not mention other sites,

and already identified by Pendlebury,

this site's political role on the basis of its

12 Pendleburygave,

for

a much better context for

defensible settlement. A. M. Snodgrass writes:

by

its

pottery

an isolated

to have been

curiously in the island' (The

aloof

249); and further on:

site

.

.

. The

evidence

of

in

spite

was such

He identified the most important links with the outside

of the fact that they

world as being with Cyprus,

very

few

does

items,

factors. On the other hand, V. R.

not want to see Karphi in 'cultural

location.

Gesell,

1'

G.

C.

L. P. Day,

and W. D.

E. Coulson,

'Excavations and survey at Kavousi 1978-1981', Hesp. 52 (1983),389-420; iid., 'Kavousi, 1982-1983: the kastro',Hesp.

54 (1985),327-55; iid., 'Excavationsat Kavousi, Crete, 1987', Hesp.57 (1988),279-301; iid., 'Excavationsat Kavousi, Crete,

1988', Hesp. 6o early iron age

(i991),

145-78; B. Hayden, 'New plans of the

settlement of Vrokastro', Hesp. 52 (1983),

367-87.

A DARK

AGE

REFUGE

CENTRE

NEAR

PEFKI,

EAST

CRETE

237

of Vrondaand Kastro has become

pottery,

geographical however, cover restrictedareas on Mirabello

the

environmentaland

vitally important

for the

chronologicaldevelopment

of the

valuableinformationon

pattern.'4 Both projects,

questionsconcerning

while the surveys aroundKavousiand Vrokastrohave

Bay,

yielded

factors as related to the settlement

and cannot resolve all

were

presented

history

and characterof the Dark Age in Crete.

More recently, selected Greek Dark

questions

were

posed by

Age problems

in brief by

complex

Coulson.'5

problem

Several

is and how

together with the rest of Greece;

which

investigations

this American scholarto illustratehow

on this

many of the key questions

of

archaeological

of the

evidence.

beginning

the

the

restricted the material available for further studies. Crete is

the island shows many

synthesis

again

discussed

individual characteristics,however,

period

is

New field

presented. must be revised and

example, the

For

should be studied before a new lead to the conclusion that

the basis of a wider range

analysed on

Crete),

settlement

immigration

different

within the island and their relationswith the outer world, are all important issueswhich must

now be addressed.

of

chronologicalsequence (particularly the problem

of the Dark Age in

pattern changes throughout

and

political

regions,

LM III C-Geometric

of

pottery styles,

the

periods, the problem

partition

emigration, the development

and cultural

of Crete into

and the interrelationsof the main settlement centres

The problem of pottery,

for

example,

cannot be restrictedto the fine ware. The coarse ware

The fabric, inclusions,

and

appears at some points to be even more helpful, and should not be treated as non-diagnostic

and, as is often the case, excluded from the final publications.

treatment of surface, and

geographical differences.'16 It is too

about the variation in this kind of pottery, but

illustratedin a more detailed

least in the mountainous areas, shows characteristics which can

distinction between LM III B and c. This

moving of pottery manufacturing, to

areas, however, particularly

Knossos and other central Cretan sites, and

LM III B and C coarse ware

ware seems to

changed more in shape

appears somewhere between the late Protogeometric and Geometric periods: the fabric

became

quickly

the range of colour variationsmore restricted, while new motifs of incised decoration

decoration are very important indicators of chronological

way elsewhere, may

phenomenon may

early to present here more comprehensive conclusions

some preliminary remarks,

be helpful.'7 In general

which will be

the coarse ware, at

be used to show some

have been connected with the

geographical

as was the case at

workshops from lower settlements,

with a long tradition of ceramic

zone. In some

the defensiblesettlementssituatedin a different

where there

be

was a continuity of settlement,

perhaps

in Chania, the differencesbetween the

In the mountainous sites the coarse

period, and certainly it

of the coarse ware

may have changed very

less recognizable.

little during the LM III c-SM/PG

than in fabric. The next

key point in the sequence

much harder, the clay better-fired,

the inclusions finer and more

homogeneous, and

"4 D. C. Haggis, The Kavousi-ThriphtiSurvey: An Analysisof SettlementPatternsin anArea of EasternCretein theBronze Age and Early Iron Age (Ph.D. diss., Univ. of Minnesota, 1992); id., 'Survey at Kavousi, Crete: the iron age settlements',AJA95

(Iggi),

Kavousi-Thriphti Survey,1988-1989', AJA94 (1990),323; B.

Hayden, J. A. Moody, and 0. Rackham, 'The Vrokastro

291;

M.

S.

Mook

and

D.

Haggis,

'The

J.

Surveyproject, 1986-1989', Hesp. 61 (1992),293-354.

5 W. D. E. Coulson, The GreekDark Ages: A Review of the

Evidenceand Suggestionsfor FutureResearch (Athens,1990).

16D. C. Haggis and M. S. Mook, 'The Kavousi coarse wares: a bronze age chronology for survey in the Mirabello area, East Crete',AJA97 (1993),265-93.

17Nowicki (n.2).

238

KRZYSZTOF

NOWICKI

replace

settlement

Another

the old ones. The latter changes seem to coincide with the considerable changes in the

pattern worth a brief mention is the

point

and

of Crete.

problem

of the

regional partition

of the island.

investigations than that

dividedinto more than two or

on the basis of new field

and cultural unit. With the collapse of

period of partition,

but

and this

process

at some point and in some

certainly by

certainly by

the

and

political, social,

outside. Such

The picture appears to be more complicated

Snodgrass.'8 Crete was probably

three areas, and East Crete was not a

Minoan-Mycenaean

deepened throughout the period in question. areas the

Geometric period. Partition and unification (the latter based on a new

perhaps ethnic identity) shaped the new map of Crete during the LM III c-Geometric

periods, and at the end it reveals large towns, probably expanding their outer territories by

force, and old refuge

a picture brings us, of course, to the question

by Coulson in the work mentioned.'19This, however, cannot be resolvedbefore revealing local

variation in material culture, and before the

general, is understood. The subject of dark

age

of the defensiblesitesin the Cretanmountains.20

To understandthe actualrole of defensiblesettlementsin dark age Crete, one must consider

discussedin connection with

how many have already been identified and how few are usually

in the

published of defensible sites is limited to a

few sentences. Other works usually do not mention as many sites as Kanta.22However, how

excellent book

the

complex, and at present it should be separated from the problem

particular, Knossos is much more

presentedby Desborough

political civilization Crete entered the

On the other hand, in the

process was reversed, probably

Protogeometric,

settlementseither being abandonedor under

pressure from

of Dorians, the second

major problem pointed

archaeological situation of dark age Knossos, in

and of central and northern Crete in

subject.

The most

comprehensive study of Kanta.21 Even here, however, the problem

of the LM III material was

only very

general differencesbetweencentralandE. Crete, andthew

225,

when

writing Crete:'the borderbetweenthe two

defileon the roadfromMallia throughDreros, closeto the

moderntownof

thathe didnot

part

234-5).Snodgrass(n.

's Desborough(n. 12) was able to

remainedfor him a blank

point

I13,

out

spot (pp.

115-17,

12)proposed a moredetailed picture

about the borderbetween central and E.

may

be

Neapolis'(p.164). It is

a pity

placed

at the

wellintothe

generalchanges in

right to point

to the

c (or

some

drawthe restof thisborderor explain howandwhenit was

formed.MaterialfromLM III c siteson bothsidesof S.'s

borderis verysimilar, butnot thatof the PG or G

periods.

This

the settlement pattern of Creteat the turnof LM III

be

roleof the Neapolis corridorin the expansion of the central

Cretan element towards the E, and to

political

borderlineat this place. The lattercanbe drawnaroundthe

whole Lasithi

range, developing into large

special

Subminoan) andPG.S. may

phenomenon fits very

with the outer settlements quickly

towns

(PanagiaProphitisIlias,Lyttos,

Phlechtron,

(e.g.

Kastello,TapesKastello, Zenia decadence or

Kera

process can be also noted in other

moving

to other locations

KaloChorio Maza,Anavlochos,Driros,Lato) andtheinner

Lasithiansettlements (KeraKarphi, GoniesTo

Adrianos Fortetsa, Kritsa

Kastrokephala, Erganos) experiencing

abandonmentand

Papoura). A similar

regions of Crete, isthmus.

Rethymnon 19Coulson (n. 20 The picture

beyond the palace

Unexplored occupation during (M. R. Popham,

preliminaryreport on the excavationsfrom 1967 to 1972', AR

19 (1972-3),59-61). The Stratigraphical Museum excavations show this area to be abandoned by late LM III B, but clearly

reoccupied

Stratigraphical

29 (1982-3),

recently summarized by J. N. Coldstream ('Knossos; an

urban nucleus in the Dark Age?', in La transizione delmiceneo all'altoarcaismo: dalpalazzo alla citth(Roma, 1991),287-99). 21 A. Kanta, TheLateMinoanIII Periodin Crete:A Surveyof

Sites,Pottery andtheirDistribution (SIMA58;

e.g. the w Siteia mountains

important

and the

i5).

revealed by two

excavations

in Knossos is somewhat different. The

continuing, but restricted,

and SM

Mansion area shows

phases

'The Unexplored Mansion at Knossos: a

the LM III B, LM III c,

in

LM

III

c

(P. M.

Warren,

'Knossos:

Museum excavations, 1978-82, part III', AR

69-83).

The problem of DA Knossos was

G6teborg, 1980).

sites

(including

22

e.g.

Whitley

mentions

only

5-9

non-defensible

Style, Burialand Society in Dark Age Greece: Social,Stylistic and

ones) for SM, 8-12 for PG (A.J. M. Whitley,

MortuaryChange in the Two Communities of AthensandKnossos

betweennioo and 7oo Bc (Ph.D. diss., Univ. of Cambridge,

1986),261).

A DARK

AGE

REFUGE

CENTRE

NEAR

PEFKI,

EAST

CRETE

239

these sites relate to the more than one hundred defensiblesettlementsso far identifiedfor the

LM III c-G early phase of

the Dark Age (LM III C-early PG), and this is apparentlyonly a fraction of all

sites of this type once scattered

completely changed,

or even refuge

settlementswere identified in both north and south (Rokka and

in late LM

III B and at the beginning of III C, to abandon their old settlementsand look for safety on the

summits of

easily Mirabello and

in

can say,therefore, that the threatwhich forced most of the Cretans, at some

Agios Georgios Kastri).24 We

periods

in Crete needs to be addressed.23 At least

as in the case of

seventy

can be dated to the

throughout the island. For some areas the picture must be

West Crete, where

typical defensible

bay

point

and Kissamos

bay,

defended mountains was similar in the Zakros

Sphakia. Local differences, like the continuity

reflect more the

of settlement in Knossos,

Chania, and some parts of Mesara, may

than the

problem of the Dark Age

strength of particular communities

new archaeological

despite being

a

led

differentcircumstancesin different parts of Crete.25

published.

The

many ideas

very

The

in Crete cannot be revised until more

limited

scope

evidence is

starting-point for

the theory

itself.6 The only way to give a new impetus to further research on the period in question

seems to be field studies in the Cretan

excavationsstartedsome years ago.27 The newly identifiedsites near Pefki

recent result of the

already been published.28

to the limited

to a situationwhere each criticism of an earlier theory contributesno more than

of available information,

arising from the

first excavationsat early dark age sites, has

mountains, as a supplementaryproject

(Siteia) are the most

project which previously

concerned the area directly to the west and has

GEOGRAPHY

Pefki is situated on the southern outskirtsof the Romanati massif, in the SE part of the west

Siteia mountains (FIGS.I-3).29 Romanati has a similar

secondary

by many gullies

geological

structure to most of the East

Cretan mountains:

schist/phyllite core. The shape of the landscape

is cut

cliffs.The karstic process can be found in crevices and caves,

of Romanati. Seismic

local landscape,

Springs limited to a few areas and appear in a usual geological situation, in the zone between the

are

(Jurassic) limestones overlie

gorges;

is

primarily

the outer faces of

an earlier (Permian, Triassic) due to erosion. The main massif

particularrocky islandsform high

particularly in the southern part

and small

activitymay as in the

have been responsible for the most dramatic changes in the

vicinity of Pefki.

The Romanati massif is not as rich in water as the mountains to the west.

23 All these siteswill be presented in detailin Nowicki (n. 2).

24 K.

Nowicki, 'Report on investigations in Greece, VIII:

studiesin

g99i', Archeologia(Warsaw),43 (1992),118-19.

(n. 20), 83.

25Warren

26 See e.g. V R. Desborough, 'Crete in the first half of the

twelfth century BC:some

CretologicalCongress(Rethymnon,18-23 Sept. 1971), vol. A I

(Athens, 1973),62-9, esp. the author's remark'This is not a

matter of adding purpose to bring

contradictions, that the facts imply.' Recent field

to your knowledge of the facts; it is my to your notice certain problems, and even

problems', in Proceedingsof theThird

investigations and the new facts yielded by them indicate that there are many fewer contradictions than the facts seemed to imply twenty years ago when D. presented his interesting but controversial paper.

remark concerns two DA sites: Kavousi Vronda

and Kavousi Kastro; see reports on the excavations by Gesell

etal. (n. 13). 28 K. Nowicki, 'The west Siteia mountains at the turn of

the Bronze and Iron Ages', Aegaeum, 6

27This

(I99o), 161-82.

29 On the geography of the w Siteia mountains see

Nowicki (n. 28), 16I-6.

240

KRZYSZTOF

NOWICKI

FIG.i. Defensiblesettlementsin LM III c-PG Crete (selection).I. Milatos, 2. VrachasiAnavlochos,3. Driros,4. Zenia

Kastrokefala, Adrianos Fortetsa,TapesKastello,5. Lato, 6.

Anatoli Mesokastella,9. MythiKastello,io.

Arvi

Kritsa Kastello,7. Vrokastro, 8. KalamafkaKastelloand

Fortetsa, ii. Keratoand Loutraki Kandilioro, 12. ErganosKefali,13.

AfratiProfitis Elias,14.Lyttos,15. KeraKarfiand GoniesTo Flechtron,16. Kalo Chorio Maza, 17. Profitis Elias/Lykastos,

18. Krousonas Koufo, 19. Prinias Patela, 20. LigortinosKefala,

24. Gortys,25.

21.Kastelliana Kastello, 22. Rotasi Kefala,23. Pobia Vigla,

Kourtes Kefala, 26. Axos,27. PandanassaVeniand Thronos Kefala, 28. SpiliVorizi, Frati Kefala, and

AtsipadesFonises,29. Mirthios Kirimianou,3o. Ag. GeorgiosKastri,31.VrysesAg. Georgios,32. Rokka.

500 -

700

-

LAND

700 m

100

m

OVER

1000m

FIG.2. Defensiblesettlementsin E. Crete. I. Palaikastro Kastri, 2. Zakros Gorge Kato Kastello,3.

5. Praisos, 6. ChandrasVoila Kastri,7. KryaAg.Georgios, 8. MyrsiniKastello/Ellinika,9.

Zakros GorgeEllinika,4. Sfakia Kastri,

TourlotiKastri, IO. Pefki: Stavromenos,

Kastellopoulo, and MegaChalavro, II. Ag. Stefanos Kastello,12.ChrisopigiKorakia,13.

14.Ag.IoannisPsychro,15. Koutsounari Karfi, 16.Vainia Stavromenos, 17.

Oreino: Kastri, Kato Ellinika, andPano Ellinika,

KatoChorioProfitis Elias, 18.Monastiraki:Chalasmenoand

Katalimata,19. Kavousi: Vronda,Aloni, and Kastro, 20. Asari, 21.PalaikastroPlakalonia Kalamafka.

),

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242

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limestone and schist layers. Many are seasonal; in some areas the water-tableelevation has

sunk, and today the springs yield far less water or have even completely dried up. The

existence of

not only of early (Agios Stephanos)

wells. The intensive watering based on the new

vegetation zones of decades ago.

deep

deep wells is responsible for changes in the

this area. More olive trees are visible around Romanati than several

springs

around Romanati was

probably the most important

villages.

factor in the location

settlements, but also of medieval

The Venetian (Pefki) or Turkish

fountains are still in use, though today more water is drawn from

The expansion of olive groves has caused not only

cultivation and even of

has continued

process

top and higher slopes

like

deforestation, but also the decline of

vineyards. The reduction in grain cultivation is typical of the

grain whole island, and the

area over the

are scattered around the massif,

shepherds from Daphni, Lithines, and Agios Stephanos.

winter to lower

plains number of abandoned and

pattern has undergone

much bigger but fewer than in the past few

Crete). resourcesof the area. The

especially of Romanati is dominated

since the second world war. A

by

large pasturage. Severalmandras

which serves as a main summer

or above

area for the

herding The animalsare driven down for the

that around Adromyloi

Analipsi-Makrygialos. The great

herding

herds are

is a characteristicof the whole of

supported by the physical

partly destroyed considerable changes during the last few decades. In

generations(this than can be

usually higher

mandrasindicatesthat on Romanati the

general,

The number of animals is

last few dry years have revealedthis problem most dramatically.

villages and one deserted village

There are three inhabited

around the Romanati massif

(FIG.3). Agios Stephanos

Daphni on the

and Pefki are located on the south side at an altitude of c.400 m,

by Pashley as having

19

north slope at c.6oo m. All three villages were mentioned

the

families.30Between

and partly destroyedvillage

least, by families who had houses in other villages as well, for example in Daphni. The

travelling time between the villagesrange

(Ag. Stephanos-Daphni, Pefki-Daphni),

which followed the eroded and

places. Better-constructedkalderimiaconnected the villages with the

the routesfrom Daphni to Siteia and from Agios Stephanos to Makrygialos.

following populations: Ag. Stephanos (Gras) 17 families, Pefki 21 families, Daphni

Daphni and Agios Stephanos,

of Aori.

at c.6oo m above the sea, is the abandoned

at

to one hour kalderimia

by directly acrossthe massif (FIG.3).

Many

can be still seen at

According to the locals, Aori was inhabited, in part

from half an hour

(Pefki-Ag.Stephanos) and all were connected with each other

higher slopes remains of such

of Romanati or ran

destroyed

kalderimia, or simply pathways,

'outer world', for example

apparently laid out at

and

These paths and kalderimiawere of very local significance, and were

Avgo-Roukakkaline,

Makrygialos-Goudoura coastal plains; behind Analipsi

a distancefrom the main transitroutes.The latterran around

plains

eastern extension of the

Siteia plain via Daphni and Krya. Along the southern coast ran an easy route from lerapetra

to the

gives coast. Of all the aforementioned villages, only Daphni was located close to, and directly

line entered the Lithines corridor which

the easiest access to Siteia on the northern

it branched off, and its northern

Romanati,followingvalleys

which, with their gentler contours, made travelmore comfortable.To the north ran the

which connected the Mirabello area with the

above, the main transit route. It seems, however, that during the Venetian and Turkish

30 R. Pashley, Travelsin Crete (London, 1837), i. 322.

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243

periods, if not earlier, the south coastal line played only an insignificant role in lines of

up because of the high location of Agios

in

the last

Stephanos

comparison to the fields around the villages. The

twenty or thirtyyears.

communication, and that the main route was moved

and Pefki. The coastal area in

general was regarded

poor process has been reversed

as

and

unprofitable

during

EARLY

OCCUPATION

Very

mountain is a blank

in evidence dating back to the Neolithic period and the Early and Middle Bronze Ages.

Several sites from

We can

well. If we accept

depended not only

on the political and social situation, we can suggest some topographical

for

looking Previous archeologicalinvestigations mentioned Neolithic in one of two caves situatednear

Pefki,namely Sto Vreiko (FIG.3, C I). There is no publishedmaterial,however, and neither the

method works.Can we also use it in

little is known of the ancient settlement on the massif of Romanati, and so far this

spot on the archaeologicalmap of Crete. The east Siteia plateau abounds

these periods

are also known from the areas to the north, south, and west.

have

penetrated

Romanati as

suppose, therefore,

that the early Cretan settlers may

geographical setting

the idea that the

of human habitations in Crete

on environmental factors, but also

sites. All the

(and in some periods firstand foremost)

criteriafor searching that this

archaeological

dark age settlements discussed below may prove

for earliersites on the Romanatimassif?

the finds can be proven

at the moment.3' The second cave,

dating nor the interpretation of

Apaloustres (FIG. 3, C 2; FIG.4), was not claimed as an archaeological

scatter of

site, but I recorded a

probable

EM sherds 30 m from the entrance on a visit in 1992 (FIG.4. 14).

Early Minoan period.

It comes from the site which is

situated on the very southern

Stephanos (FIG.3. below a

the seashore.It can be

slope

site is located on the SE edge of

of an isolated

sparse remains of a Middle Minoan I-II site (farmstead or group of houses).

ariseswhether Kastello was a proper habitation

in case of threat by the people living

c.5oo m south of Kastello at Akra

(high cliff), but is rather open

represent mostly the Neo-palatial period, but fragments dating to the Proto-palatialperiod can be also seen.

on the other sides. Sherds visible on the surface seem to

We have much better evidence for the

edge of the Romanati massif, between Makrygialos and Agios

steep

2). A small settlement probably of EM I-II date was located on a

compared

Kastello, which is in fact divided into two

rocky knoll which rises beside the approach to the deep valley some 2 km from

to similarsites on the south coast of Crete. A somewhatlater

Romanati, c.I km NEof Pefki (FIG.3. 9).32Here, on the summit

separate parts, are the The

place, or a kind of defensible stronghold used

question

around it. An extensive Minoan settlement is situated

is defensible on the w and sw sides

rocky knoll,

(FIG.3. 8). The place

Another Middle Minoan

settlement is situated c.I.5 km SE of Kastello

on

(bearing I 17 deg.) at

is

Kieratia Lagos (FIG.3. Io). Architectural remains, possibly a number of houses built of large

unworked blocks, cover an area c.6o m in diameter

top of a gentle hillock, which

encircled on the west by a natural wall of rocky boulders. Some stones, however, may have

31 N. Papadakis, Siteia, Fatherland of Myson andKorneros:A

Historical,Archaeological andCulturalGuide (Siteia, 1983),73.

32 The sites of Kastello, Akra, and Kieratia Lagos were

shown to me by G. Kanavakis, to whom I also owe all the information concerning the history of the destruction of these sites.

244

KRZYSZTOF

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FIG. 4. Pefki area (for the sites see text).

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245

reinforced this natural fortification, making it slightly higher. The site of Kieratia Lagos is

partly destroyed by an electricity pylon. Several sherds visible on the surface belonged to the

Protogeometric-Geometric

Kieratia Lagos seems to have been a border site on the eastern edge of the Romanati massif.

The MM III-LM I period has yet to be identified amongst numerous archaeological sites scattered around the lower slopes of Romanati. One of the most promising areas is that of

Adromyloi, where a very extensive settlement located on the summit and steep eastern slopes

of To Marino To Kephali

Another MM-LM

Xenotaphia,

inhabited

setting is very typical of sites

period, but most of the material dates back to Middle Minoan.

(FIG. 3. 13) suggests

was recorded

the local

centre

of MM-LM

occupation.

called

I settlement

in the