Cyprus. A Dynamic Island

Edited by Ruurd Binnert Halbertsma en Despina Pilides | 2019

Cyprus. A Dynamic Island

Edited by Ruurd Binnert Halbertsma en Despina Pilides | 2019

ISBN: 9789088908590

Imprint: Sidestone Press | Format: 210x280mm | 136 pp. | Language: English | 20 illus. (bw) | 140 illus. (fc) | Keywords: archaeology, prehistory, Cyprus, Mediterranean archaeology, museology, Greek archaeology, Roman archaeology, Early Christianity | download cover

Cyprus has a long and eventful history. The island lies in the eastern Mediterranean, where the cultures of Anatolia, Assyria, the Levant, Egypt, and Greece flourished in antiquity. Each of these great civilisations has left its mark on the history of Cyprus, through commercial ties, migration, conflicts, and technological innovations. The mining of copper in the Troodos Mountains led to lively trade, greatly boosting the prosperity of the island’s various kingdoms. These independent states maintained relations with all the neighbouring states, leading to a cultural melting pot of languages, customs, and religions. Yet certain elements can be seen as truly Cypriot down the ages: the widespread veneration of the goddess Aphrodite, who was born from the foam of the waves off the island’s west coast, the unique character of the arts in the Bronze and Iron Ages, and a marked capacity to absorb foreign influences without sacrificing the island’s own distinctive character.

This book introduces readers to the main landmarks in the history of Cyprus. Various topics in the island’s archaeological past are discussed, each one written by a leading expert. You will meet the first inhabitants of the island, who crossed the sea from the mainland in tiny boats and rafts, bringing their livestock with them. And you will read about the ships, which started their journey across the Mediterranean laden with cargoes of copper ingots. Discussions of the history of archaeological investigations of the island range from random acts of plunder in the nineteenth century to ongoing scientific investigations. Several chapters focus on the highlights of Cypriot art in the collections of the museums of Cyprus, Stockholm, and Leiden. This book is published to coincide with the exhibition Cyprus: A Dynamic Island at the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden in Leiden.


This book is also available in Dutch / Dit boek is ook verkrijgbaar in het Nederlands: Cyprus. Een eiland in beweging


Exhibition 11 October 2019 – 15 March 2020 This book is published alongside the exhibition ‘Cyprus’ in the National Museum of Antiquities, Leiden (The Netherlands).

The exhibition Cyprus: A Dynamic Island tells the remarkable story of an island with over 12,000 years of history and culture. Cyprus was one of the most important hubs of ancient cultures in the Mediterranean. You can see approximately 400 objects, including 300 archaeological masterpieces from the national collections of Cyprus. Standing in the galleries are man-sized sculptures and portrait statues fashioned in marble and terracotta, imaginative pottery decorated with faces and animal figures, luxury imports from the ancient Near East and Egypt, large bronze cauldrons and weapons, colourful mosaics, gold jewellery, and a royal throne inlaid with silver.


Foreword director Department of Antiquities, Cyprus
Foreword director Rijksmuseum van Oudheden, Leiden
Chronology and map of the Eastern Mediterranean

1. The Cyprus Museum: the history of its collections
2. Cypriot antiquities in Leiden
3. From stone to object: the geology of Cyprus
4. The Neolithic: migrations from overseas
5. The Chalcolithic: traditions and innovations
6. The Bronze Age: the importance of copper and trade
7. The Iron Age: the age of kingdoms
8. Foreign rule: the Hellenistic and Roman periods
9. Byzantine Cyprus: the advent of Christianity

In the spotlight

Authors
Transliteration of place names
Select bibliography

Prof. Dr. Ruurd Binnert Halbertsma

Ruurd Binnert Halbertsma (1958) is curator in the National Museum of Antiquities in Leiden, professor at the Faculty of Archaeology of Leiden University and Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London.

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Abstract:

Cyprus has a long and eventful history. The island lies in the eastern Mediterranean, where the cultures of Anatolia, Assyria, the Levant, Egypt, and Greece flourished in antiquity. Each of these great civilisations has left its mark on the history of Cyprus, through commercial ties, migration, conflicts, and technological innovations. The mining of copper in the Troodos Mountains led to lively trade, greatly boosting the prosperity of the island’s various kingdoms. These independent states maintained relations with all the neighbouring states, leading to a cultural melting pot of languages, customs, and religions. Yet certain elements can be seen as truly Cypriot down the ages: the widespread veneration of the goddess Aphrodite, who was born from the foam of the waves off the island’s west coast, the unique character of the arts in the Bronze and Iron Ages, and a marked capacity to absorb foreign influences without sacrificing the island’s own distinctive character.

This book introduces readers to the main landmarks in the history of Cyprus. Various topics in the island’s archaeological past are discussed, each one written by a leading expert. You will meet the first inhabitants of the island, who crossed the sea from the mainland in tiny boats and rafts, bringing their livestock with them. And you will read about the ships, which started their journey across the Mediterranean laden with cargoes of copper ingots. Discussions of the history of archaeological investigations of the island range from random acts of plunder in the nineteenth century to ongoing scientific investigations. Several chapters focus on the highlights of Cypriot art in the collections of the museums of Cyprus, Stockholm, and Leiden. This book is published to coincide with the exhibition Cyprus: A Dynamic Island at the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden in Leiden.


This book is also available in Dutch / Dit boek is ook verkrijgbaar in het Nederlands: Cyprus. Een eiland in beweging


Exhibition 11 October 2019 – 15 March 2020 This book is published alongside the exhibition ‘Cyprus’ in the National Museum of Antiquities, Leiden (The Netherlands).

The exhibition Cyprus: A Dynamic Island tells the remarkable story of an island with over 12,000 years of history and culture. Cyprus was one of the most important hubs of ancient cultures in the Mediterranean. You can see approximately 400 objects, including 300 archaeological masterpieces from the national collections of Cyprus. Standing in the galleries are man-sized sculptures and portrait statues fashioned in marble and terracotta, imaginative pottery decorated with faces and animal figures, luxury imports from the ancient Near East and Egypt, large bronze cauldrons and weapons, colourful mosaics, gold jewellery, and a royal throne inlaid with silver.


Contents

Foreword director Department of Antiquities, Cyprus
Foreword director Rijksmuseum van Oudheden, Leiden
Chronology and map of the Eastern Mediterranean

1. The Cyprus Museum: the history of its collections
2. Cypriot antiquities in Leiden
3. From stone to object: the geology of Cyprus
4. The Neolithic: migrations from overseas
5. The Chalcolithic: traditions and innovations
6. The Bronze Age: the importance of copper and trade
7. The Iron Age: the age of kingdoms
8. Foreign rule: the Hellenistic and Roman periods
9. Byzantine Cyprus: the advent of Christianity

In the spotlight

Authors
Transliteration of place names
Select bibliography

Prof. Dr. Ruurd Binnert Halbertsma

Ruurd Binnert Halbertsma (1958) is curator in the National Museum of Antiquities in Leiden, professor at the Faculty of Archaeology of Leiden University and Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London.

read more









© 2016 Sidestone Press      KvK nr. 28114891