LH IIIC Pottery in the Bay of Porto Rafti: Insights into Production, Consumption, and Exchange (20 min)


Bartłomiej Lis, Polish Academy of Sciences


Pedestrian survey undertaken by the Bays of East Attica Regional Survey (BEARS) project around Porto Rafti bay between 2019 and 2022 generated substantial evidence that robust settlement and multiple types of craft production took place on the bay’s islets throughout the LH IIIC period (ca. 1200–1050 B.C.E.). This evidence, taken together with previously recovered material from the contemporary cemetery at the site of Perati, on the bay’s northern shore, constitutes a rich new resource for study of central Aegean society and economy during the period following the demise of Mycenaean palatial centers. The purpose of this presentation is to provide an overview of the LH IIIC pottery collected during the BEARS project, to contextualize its relationship to material from the cemetery of Perati, and to discuss its importance for broader understandings of LH IIIC pottery production, consumption, and exchange in the region. The paper begins by reviewing evidence recovered from survey on Praso and Raftis islets that demonstrates local production of pottery in Porto Rafti. It then characterizes the pottery from the two main LH IIIC assemblages located by the survey, from the islets of Raftis and Praso, as well as a smaller assemblage from the islet of Raftopoula. Similarities and differences among these assemblages and between the survey pottery and the pottery from Perati are considered. The paper concludes with a discussion of the nature of Porto Rafti’s LH IIIC ceramic production and supply systems, especially the relationship between local production and external acquisition, as far as can be discerned from a preliminary macroscopic analysis.