This project will provide new insights into the development and importance of textile production techniques in Greece in the Early Bronze Age (EBA). During this period basic cultural features of the later Minoan and Mycenaean civilisations were determined, yet the impact of textile production in this process has never been investigated. Despite the fact that EBA Greece developed significant links with Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean, their impact on textile production and technical development throughout the 3rd Millennium BC is yet to be studied. A systematic analysis of textile tools, their first appearance and distribution patterns will be the project’s point of departure. Full sets of EBA textile tools will be tested experimentally at the Centre of Textile Research in Copenhagen and evaluated with an international team of textile researchers in order to understand the manufacturing techniques and to identify the types of threads used (animal vs. plant). My objectives are 1. to examine the rate of development of textile techniques; 2. to elucidate the role of textiles in the long debated cultural change at the end of the EBA; 3. to integrate theoretical and practical studies on textile tools in order to develop new ways of interpreting
archaeological data; 4. to address social and economic issues by analysing contextual evidence from settlements with implications to functional zones and the status of textile production. This project will be carried out through collaboration with numerous sites and research institutions in Greece, Germany and Denmark. The expected major accomplishments will be 1. a far greater understanding of the development of textile production in EBA Greece and the impact of its contacts with Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean; 2. the evaluation of analytical methods and experiments to understand the function of the textile tools and 3. the integration of these new results into a more robust archaeological reconstruction of EBA Greece.
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