Photo overlooking the totem pole in the Pitt Rivers Museum


During the Final Honour School, students delve more deeply into the subject areas which have been introduced to them in the first year. They will also decide on which three options they would like to take from the following list of 30 subjects. One option is studied in the second year, two are studied in the third year.

The Greeks & the Mediterranean World, c. 950-500 BC

This course has two main broad aims: First the study of a period during which Greek society expanded its horizons both geographically and in terms of the complexity of its organization. Second the in-depth study of culture contact between Greece and the different parts of the Mediterranean world (the Eastern, Central and Western Mediterranean).

In the period under study Greek communities turned themselves into prosperous self-governing city-states exercising power that was felt over a wide area. This is also the period when contacts with the non-Greek world played a vital role: trading posts were established in the Levant and later in Egypt, settlements were established abroad in Italy, Sicily, the north Aegean, the Black Sea, and North Africa, and Greeks in Asia Minor came increasingly under pressure from powers further east. Moreover as literary evidence comes to be available, there is a challenge to integrate the diverse literary evidence with the rich material record.

Those taking this paper are expected to become familiar with the material evidence and the most important sites (Lefkandi, Zagora, Athens, Al Mina, Naucratis, Cyrene, Syracuse, Pithekoussai, Motya, Carthage, Huelva). Emphasis is placed on the problems of interpreting the detailed evidence in order to construct a broader picture.  Ability to read ancient or modern foreign languages is not required.

Last update on 09/12/16 by Robyn Mason.

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