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CALL. 31.01.2017: Under the Mediterranean: 100 years on... - Nicosia (Cyprus)


On 28 October 2017, 100 years will have passed since Honor Frost was born in Cyprus. To mark this event, it has been decided to celebrate the centenary of her birth, to honour her work and that of her Foundation, by organising an international conference on Cyprus. It will be held over four days and will be hosted at the University of Cyprus, Nicosia. A fifth day will be dedicated to visiting some of the important coastal archaeological sites of Cyprus, particularly the pre-Classical harbours that were the main focus of Honor's research. Participants will also be invited to sail on the replica Kyrenia Liberty. The conference is largely supported by the HFF.



LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: University of Cyprus, Nicosia (Cyprus)

ORGANIZADOR/ORGANIZER/ORGANIZZATORE: Stella Demesticha (University of Cyprus, Maritime Archaeological Research Laboratory) ; Lucy Blue (Maritime Archaeological Director HFF/ University of Southampton, Centre for Maritime Archaeology)

INFO: web -


We invite specialists and researchers to submit titles and abstracts (300 words maximum) for a presentation or a poster related to one of the session titles listed below. English will be the official language of the conference and each paper should last no longer than 20 minutes.

There will be no Conference fees, but participants will have to cover their own travel and accommodation expenses.

Grants will be available for early career researchers that are from or who work in the eastern Mediterranean (Syria, Lebanon, Cyprus, Israel, Egypt) and whose paper or poster proposals are accepted by the conference Steering Committee.

Please send your title and abstract, by 31 January 2017, to:


1. In the Footsteps of Honor Frost

(Francis Martine Allouche, Elena Flavia Castagnino Berlinghieri)

2. Connected by the Sea

(Timmy Gambin, Bernard Knapp)

Seafaring is a mode of travel, a way to traverse maritime space that enables not only the transport of goods and materials but also of people and ideas — communicating and sharing knowledge across the sea and between different lands. The world of ancient Mediterranean seafaring and seafarers was complex, involving a number of different peoples in multiple networks of economic and social exchange. But is it possible to trace the origins and emergence of these ancient trade networks? How did they change through time? Can we discuss at any reasonable level who was involved in prehistoric maritime ventures? Who built the early ships in which maritime trade was conducted, and who captained them? Who sailed them? Which ports and harbours were the most propitious for maritime trade? What other evidence exists for seafaring, fishing, the exploitation of marine resources and related maritime matters? To what extent did early seafarers develop their own rituals and can we speak of 'religions or ideology of maritime mobility'? Are such factors reflected in a 'cultic' landscape and, if so, how were such landscapes perceived from out at sea ('seascapes')?

The papers in this session seek to address these and other, related questions by examining a wide range of material, documentary, iconographic and/or ethnographic evidence, and by re-examining current interpretations. Because the social aspects of seafaring, the relationship different peoples had with the sea, and the whole notion of 'seascapes' are all too seldom discussed in the literature of the Mediterranean, this session aims to devote attention to such factors, including: voyaging, mobility, connectivity, migration, the length and purpose as well as the risk of the journey, the knowledge and experience of navigation, the impact of distance and access to the exotic upon peoples' identities and ideologies, and much more.

3. Seafaring, Navigation and Maritime Space

(Pascal Arnaud, Julian Whitewright)

This session seeks to explore three related areas of investigation focused on the action of seafaring, the process and practice of navigation, and the construction and perception of maritime space. Papers are welcomed that address topics such as the typologies and use of ships, the relationship between different ship types and sailing routes, the technology of sails and rigging, the development of maritime technology to facilitate seafaring and/or navigation, the creation and use of sailing routes and methods of navigation, and the wider question of how maritime space was addressed in antiquity and whether or not the notion of maritime territories is a valid one.

4. Ports, Harbours and Anchorages in the Ancient Mediterranean: New Discoveries and New Approaches

(David Blackman, Kalliopi Baika)

The importance of harbours as a base for navigation in the Ancient Mediterranean has been increasingly recognised in recent years. Collaboration with geologists has added a new dimension, showing man's reaction to the challenges of constructing safe havens on often hostile shores. Reviews of the contemporary literary and epigraphic evidence have been combined with the interpretation of new discoveries on the shore and under water.

Following in the tradition of TROPIS, papers are welcomed on new discoveries and new approaches to the evidence which is now being revealed: for example the evidence that harbour studies offer with respect to our understanding of ship construction and maintenance; the distinction between civil and military harbours; harbour networks; the provision of storage and the identification of features such as water supply; evidence of multicultural features; the threats of natural catastrophes and the human reaction to such catastrophes; and the contribution to harbour studies by scientists using new analytical and dating methods.

5. Maritime Cultural Landscape

(Dorit Sivan, Helen Farr)

This session seeks to bring together papers from across the Mediterranean that address the developing maritime landscape, from various time periods ranging from earliest prehistory onwards. Discussions on cultural maritime landscapes of the past need to be contextualized with an understanding of the physical landscape; new research on coastal geomorphology, sea-level change and the evidence for coastal and submerged archaeology on the coast and the shallow shelf will be brought together to inform us about how this region has changed through time, and how this has influenced cultural activity within it.

6. Maritime Transport Containers

(Stella Demesticha, Elisabeth Greene)

Maritime Transport Containers (MTCs) may be used as an umbrella term to describe a series of ancient pottery vessel types, repeatedly used or specifically designed to move bulk organic cargo over long distances by sea. Also known as amphorae, especially by Aegean archaeologists of the Iron Age and later periods, MTCs provide direct evidence of Mediterranean seaborne trade and exchange in antiquity. Because they were produced and traded on an industrial scale, they abound in the maritime archaeological record, both on land and especially under the sea, where their presence marks sea routes, anchorages, ports and shipwrecks.

Contributors to this session are invited to discuss MTC assemblages or types, beyond typological classifications or provenance studies, with a focus on their maritime aspects. Our goal is to bring together maritime archaeologists interested in trade connections, shipwreck excavators and amphora specialists to present new discoveries or their views on more specific matters, such as metrology and standardization modes, lading techniques and space arrangement on board ships, as well as documentation methodologies during or following underwater investigations.

7. Shipwrecks

(Carlo Beltrame, Deborah Cvikel)

A shipwreck is a moment frozen in time – capturing physical evidence of the structure of the ship, its cargo and trade route, seamanship and daily life on board. Underwater archaeology and shipwreck recording can yield a wealth of information that is unobtainable through the study of traditional sources, as well as provide details that non-archaeological sources can rarely supply. Our session will be dedicated to underwater excavation and research of shipwrecks and their artefacts.

8. Ship Construction in the Ancient Mediterranean: Methods, Driving Factors, and Cross-Cultural Exchange

(Cemal Pulak Guilia Boetto)

Ancient ship construction in the Mediterranean Sea and its surrounding regions is a complex, yet important, subject of study on which significant advancements have been made over the past several decades. A focus on this subject is one of the most important legacies of TROPIS: International Symposium on Ship Construction in Antiquity, which helped propel ancient ship construction as one of the main focuses of nautical archaeology in the Mediterranean. The complexity of studying ancient ship- or boatbuilding is derived from its many distinct components, broadly divided into three categories: developments in ship construction, their driving factors, and the cross-cultural exchange underlying those developments. Development in ship construction encompasses several themes including theoretical, methodological, technological, and design advancements. These changes can take place over short or long periods of time, and can also be examined through regional or geographic specific traditions. Understanding the interdependent economic, political, social and geographical factors that directed developments in ship construction is as equally important as determining the developments themselves. While difficult to quantify, the interplay between cultures cannot be understated in the development of ship construction in the ancient Mediterranean. Following in the tradition of TROPIS, the Mediterranean Maritime Archaeology: Under the Mediterranean conference is calling for papers on ancient ship construction in the Mediterranean and the surrounding regions as it relates to these components.

9. New Technologies and Maritime Archaeology

(Dimitris Skarlatos, Jon Henderson)

Optical and sonar based approaches are evolving fast in maritime archaeology. This session aims to take stock of current advances allowing a forum for practitioners to come together and discuss the results of their projects, current problems and their hopes for the future. The session will include vision based photogrammetry, data fusion approaches, virtual/ augmented and mixed reality applications, sonar, laser scanning and geophysical work. We are interested in hearing from projects using ANY new types of technology from digital modeling to underwater and aerial platforms to more fully understand maritime sites and present them to the public.

10. Conservation and Archaeological Science

(Sturt Manning, Eleni Loizidou)

This session seeks to bring together researchers and practitioners – both established and early career – working actively in research and applications of conservation and other archaeological science approaches in the discovery, analysis, recording, conservation and preservation of the maritime cultural heritage of the Mediterranean region. Papers that discuss innovative approaches, new ways of approaching materials and problems, reassessments of past work, and solutions to issues of wider Mediterranean relevance are especially welcome.

11. Maritime Archaeological Management

(Athena Trakadas, Nadine Panagiot)

Common to most Mediterranean and Near Eastern countries, the recent century has seen massive-scale development projects which are dramatically altering the coastal and near-shore environmental and sociological landscapes of these areas. The deterioration and loss of such intrinsic heritage can negatively impact communities, affecting their cultural identity as well as their potential for socio-economic growth through sustainable eco-tourism, urban renewal, and living standards. Thus, academic archaeologists need more than ever to integrate into their research designs proper management of underwater and maritime-oriented sites and their cultural conservation. Surveys and assessments of maritime landscapes are needed in order to support marine protection and management and to provide for the protection of marine heritage assets, especially those at risk from neglect, decay or other threats.

This session will focus on the presentation of different solutions for the archaeological enhancement of the maritime landscape and the introduction of new methodologies to enable this. The objective is to strengthen the capacity of archaeologists to set basic paradigms to create a better basis for sustainable management decisions of the cultural heritage in order to realize wider social, cultural, economic and environmental benefits.

12. Maritime Cyprus

(Laina Swiny, Justin Leidwanger)

For millennia, Cyprus served as a strategic nexus for seaborne communication and exchange between the Near East and Mediterranean worlds. At the same time, this connectivity brought the island into the broader orbit of a world that sought to capitalize on its resources. Cyprus' relationship to the sea thus became a defining feature of its landscape and history from antiquity, when its name was synonymous with copper, up to the present. Through diachronic case studies, this session explores how Cyprus' reliance on the sea for resources and connections has left an indelible mark on the island's unique culture.

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