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The Early Neolithic in Greece

The Early Neolithic in Greece
The First Farming Communities in Europe


Part of Cambridge World Archaeology

  • Date Published: October 2001
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521000277

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About the Authors
  • Farmers made a sudden and dramatic appearance in Greece around 7000 BC, bringing with them new ceramics and crafts, and establishing settled villages. They were Europe's first farmers, and their settlements provide the link between the first agricultural communities in the Near East and the subsequent spread of the new technologies to the Balkans and on to Western Europe. In this 2001 book, Catherine Perlès argues that the stimulus for the spread of agriculture to Europe was a colonisation movement involving small groups of maritime peoples. Drawing evidence from a wide range of archaeological sources, including often neglected 'small finds', and introducing daring new perspectives on funerary rituals and the distribution of figurines, she constructs a complex and subtle picture of early Neolithic societies, overturning the traditional view that these societies were simple and self-sufficient.

    • The first book devoted to the earliest farming communities in the prehistoric Greece, 7000 BC
    • A problem-oriented approach that makes use of and weaves together different categories of archaeological data, including often neglected 'small finds'
    • Discusses theoretical and methodological topics of general archaeological and anthropological interest
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'It is refreshing to read an excellent archaeological study written in clear language, rather than someone's second-rate storytelling.' Antiquity

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2001
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521000277
    • length: 372 pages
    • dimensions: 244 x 170 x 20 mm
    • weight: 0.59kg
    • contains: 68 b/w illus. 17 maps 11 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. The land and its resources: the geographic context
    2. The Mesolithic background
    3. The introduction of farming: local processes, diffusion or colonization?
    4. Foreign colonists: where from?
    5. The earliest Neolithic deposits: 'aceramic', 'pre-pottery' or 'ceramic'?
    6. The spread of the Early Neolithic in Greece: chronological and geographical aspects
    7. A case study in Early Neolithic settlement patterns: Eastern Thessaly
    8. Early Neolithic subsistence economy: the domestic and the wild
    9. The Early Neolithic village
    10. Craft specialization: the contrasting cases of chipped stone tools, pottery and ornaments
    11. A variety of daily crafts
    12. Ritual interaction? The miniature world of 'dolls or deities'
    13. Interacting with the dead: from the disposal of the body to funerary rituals
    14. Interactions among the living.

  • Author

    Catherine Perlès, Université de Paris X
    Catherine Perlès is Professor in the Department of Ethnology at the University of Paris. Her recent publications include Préhistoire du feu (1977), Les industries lithiques taillées de Franchthi (3 vols., 1987, 1990, in press) and 'Greek Neolithic: a new review' (co-authored with J.-P. Demoule, 1993).

    Illustrated by

    Gerard Monthel

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