ARCX 321

Excavating in the Aegean: The Despotiko Field School (Paros, Antiparos)

Major Discipline(s):
Archaeology, Art History
Semester(s):
Summer Session I (May 27 - June 22, 2019)
Instructor(s):
Syllabus(s):

This summer course offers students the unique opportunity to actively participate in the excavation of one of the most prominent sanctuaries of the Aegean, situated on the uninhabited islet of Despotiko, west of Antiparos, in the center of the Cyclades. Systematically excavated since 2001, this sanctuary -dedicated to Apollo-, proved to be almost as rich as the well-known sanctuary on the sacred island of Delos in its architectural development and its dedications.

While unveiling the history and the different phases of ritual activity at this important Cycladic sanctuary, the participants will be introduced to archaeological fieldwork methods and theory. In particular, the excavation will focus on the exploration of a number of edifices not only within the sacred precinct, but also outside of it. An oval or apsidal building of the 8th century B.C., which represents the earliest construction of the site up to date, presents special interest. The interpretation of its character and function is crucial for reconstructing the earliest ritual practices at the site.The sanctuary attracted numerous votive dedications of various types. This gives students the opportunity to familiarize themselves with a variety of artifacts of different materials and types covering a wide chronological range extending from the Early Iron Age (9th-8th c. BC) to the Classical period.

See Vimeo video for information on Despotiko: Despotiko Video
Go to article on the archaeological excavation on Despotiko: Dig sheds light on island sanctuary
For the latest update on Despotiko go to: Archaeologists wrap-up phase one