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Der Umgang mit Vergangenheit in peloponnesischen Heiligtümern im 1. Jahrtausend v. Chr.

Peloschek, Lisa (2012) Der Umgang mit Vergangenheit in peloponnesischen Heiligtümern im 1. Jahrtausend v. Chr.
Dissertation, University of Vienna. Historisch-Kulturwissenschaftliche Fakultät
BetreuerIn: Alram-Stern, Eva

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DOI: 10.25365/thesis.20437
URN: urn:nbn:at:at-ubw:1-29322.30420.997355-9

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Abstract in German

In der vorliegenden Dissertation werden archäologische Belege vorgestellt und Erklärungen dafür gesucht, weswegen im 1. Jahrtausend v. Chr. griechische Heiligtümer vermehrt an Stätten gegründet werden, die bereits eine bronzezeitliche Vornutzung erfahren hatten. Die Peloponnes wurde exemplarisch als Landschaft gewählt, anhand welcher dieses Phänomen detailliert untersucht wurde. Hierbei konzentriert sich die Analyse auf 13 gut dokumentierte, archäologische Fundstätten, an welchen archäologische Zeugnisse der Bronzezeit und auch der nachmykenischen Epochen nachgewiesen wurden. Durch eine genaue Betrachtung der Beziehung beziehungsweise Lage der materiellen Überreste aller Epochen zueinander wird geklärt, ob in der nachmykenischen Zeit und insbesondere in der griechischen geschichtlichen Zeit ab dem 8. Jahrhundert v. Chr. davon ausgegangen werden kann, dass ein Wissen über die Hinterlassenschaften der Vergangenheit bestand. Unter dem Umgang mit Vergangenheit wird die bewusste Auseinandersetzung der antiken Menschen mit den Monumenten ihrer Ahnen verstanden. Durch die Auswertung der Grabungsbefunde und unter Miteinbeziehung von Sekundärliteratur war es im Zuge der Dissertation möglich aufzuzeigen, weswegen bronzezeitlich genutzte Stätten im 1. Jt. v. Chr. wiedervereinnahmt beziehungsweise oftmals in selbiger Funktion wiederbelebt wurden. Aufgrund der Tatsache, dass nicht nur ehemals sakral genutzte Örtlichkeiten erneut ins Interesse der antiken Bevölkerung rückten, sondern zudem profane Siedlungsstrukturen und vereinzelt sepulkral interpretierte Monumente nun als Keimzellen griechischer Heiligtümer fungieren, scheint die vormalige Funktion dieser Stätten nicht primär von Bedeutung gewesen zu sein. Im Zuge der Dissertation werden daraufhin 18 verschiedene mögliche Erklärungsmodelle diskutiert, welche zu einer Auseinandersetzung und Sakralisierung der Hinterlassenschaften der Vergangenheit angeregt haben könnten. Politische, religiöse und lokalhistorische Aspekte sind hier ebenso von Bedeutung wie die Zerstörungsgeschichte und topographische Lage der Stätten. Aufgrund der Heterogenität der einzelnen Stätten und starken lokalen Ausprägungen in den verschiedenen Regionen, in welchen sich die behandelten archäologischen Fundorte befinden, kann keine übergreifende Erklärung für das Phänomen gefunden werden. Gleichbleibende Tendenzen lassen sich dennoch in Bezug auf die chronologische Verteilung der Rückgriffe auf Vergangenes erkennen. Insbesondere im 11., 8./7. und 4. Jahrhundert v. Chr. etablierten sich Sakralstätten an den Ruinen der Vorzeit. Dieses Muster lässt sich auf die noch aufrechte Erinnerung an die Bronzezeit, die homerische Dichtung oder die Gründung der griechischen Polis beziehungsweise die Entstehung von Heroenkulten zurückführen. Im Zuge der Dissertation wird eine bislang wenig beachtete kultur- und religionsgeschichtlich relevante Fragestellung umfassend betrachtet. Perspektiven, die der Arbeit abgewonnen werden konnten, können dazu beitragen, die Ursprünge beziehungsweise Ursprungsgeschichten vieler der wichtigsten und bekanntesten griechischen Heiligtümer neu zu betrachten.

Schlagwörter in Deutsch

Griechenland / Peloponnes / Heiligtümer / Griechische Antike, Prähistorie / Rückerinnerung

Abstract in English

In archaeological research, ancient Greek sanctuaries are one of the most thoroughly discussed cultural-historical topics, covering in particular aspects of their architectural layout and ritual activity. With the present PhD dissertation it was aimed to make a new approach to this research topic, focusing on the engagement of ancient people with their past, inspired by the intentional presentation and integration of aged remains in ritual space. For the PhD project attention had been paid to investigate the phenomenon in a well-defined geographical region rich of ancient monuments, which had been carefully excavated and documented in detail. The Peloponnese has been chosen as appropriate Greek region, as it is split in several small-scale landscape units, supporting the development of unusual local cult practices. In order to highlight, how the ancient Greeks of the first Millennium BC interacted with the cultural heritage of the past, archaeological contexts of the predecessors of the Greek historical period, the latter starting with the time of Homer, have to be analysed. As such, material culture of the Bronze- and Iron Age covering both architectural remains and small findings are meaningful and need to be investigated. A comparison of the character (profane or sacral) and architectural arrangement of the remains of the prehistoric and Greek historic period will allow to demonstrate, how these past monuments have been integrated in actual building processes of the 8th to 1st centuries BC. Possible continuation of cult practices from prehistoric to historic times or the revival of almost forgotten ritual customs can be a result of this new interest into the past. Comprehensive studies on this topic can contribute to the revelation of new aspects in the initial foundation of cult places. There is a great diversity observable regarding the layout of the Greek sanctuaries and the character of the Bronze Age monuments these did replace. Moreover, different deities were worshipped in each of the sanctuaries. Trying to find general explanations for the re-use of sites previously functioning as places of profane or ritual activity is quite challenging and often inconclusive. A feature peculiar to most of the Peloponnesian sites is their prominent topographical location on rough hilltops and plateaus, often being classified as acropolis, and having the advantage of great visibility from far away. Choosing such a place as location in the formation of a Greek sanctuary would in this case be a good choice. The deliberate choice to establish a Greek sanctuary at a place of former use without doubt was severely influenced by the existence of abandoned building structures of the past. Firstly, these often monumental remains could have been interpreted by the Greeks of the historical period in a mythological way giving them ritual value. Secondly, minor building remains and associated rubble were easily accessible and therefore had been re-used for new building purposes. Generally speaking, it appears that the former function of these sites was not the motivation behind their re-use as ritual space but the nature of the remains themselves being evidence for the presence of old heroic figures of the past on the site did give them their cultic significance. These relics of the past sometimes have been preserved and presented to worshippers in the newly established sanctuaries as in Olympia. With such relics the origin of the sanctuaries going back to heroic times has been legitimised. In this way, continuity from the Bronze Age to the Iron Age was pretended and old ritual customs have been associated with these structures. Besides building structures, such a religious value has also been transferred to several small items of the great antiquity. Rediscovering the past moreover helped to remind the Greeks of the first Millennium BC about their ancestry and as such aided to conserve their identity. This is especially important in times when the social structure of the society did slowly begin to change, for example with the creation of the Greek polis. Still, it has to be stressed that cults being connected with the monuments of the past not necessarily had to be related to old customs, but are often rated as new innovative cults. Even if the heterogeneous character of the sanctuaries and different reasons for their revival are evident, from a chronological point of view certain distinct patterns can be detected. Especially in the 11th, 8th/7th and 4th centuries BC attitudes towards the appraisal of the monuments of the past have been taken. As almost all of the discussed archaeological sites have been abandoned and destructed by the end of the period SHIIIC, differing time intervals do exist in which the ruins of the past did remain out of use and have being forgotten. In the 11th century the memory of the legacy of the past still was present and people felt the need to follow and continue beliefs or traditions and therefore cults of their ancestors. People still did know about the location of the old cult places and deliberately did choose these places for their sanctuaries. The second period of “memory of the past” in the 8th and 7th centuries BC can be associated with Homer, whose poems did revive the heroes and myths of the glory past. Remains, such as ancient monumental walls, have been interpreted as remnants of this heroic time and encouraged the ancient population to ritually re-use these sites. The 4th century BC is a time when ancient hero cults did reach their peak, resulting in a deep interest in the monuments of the past. Often, these heroes have been worshipped in prehistoric built tombs or at similar sites. Particularly places which due to their shape or former function could have been used as burial sites of prehistoric people, have now been interpreted as relics of the old heroes. With the PhD thesis it was not possible to fully resolve the set of problems of the “engagement with the past” in the first Millennium BC, as it is based mostly on hypotheses. The archaeological finds and contexts in most cases do not allow to draw conclusions about complex religious beliefs of the ancient Greek society. Nonetheless, on the basis of archaeological evidence several possible explanations for the phenomenon have been given and discussed.

Schlagwörter in Englisch

Greece / Peloponnese / cult places / Greek antiquity / prehistory / memory of the past

Item Type: Hochschulschrift (Dissertation)
Author: Peloschek, Lisa
Title: Der Umgang mit Vergangenheit in peloponnesischen Heiligtümern im 1. Jahrtausend v. Chr.
Subtitle: Gestaltung von Heiligtümern, Bilderwelt, Kultpraxis
Umfangsangabe: 289, [23] S. : Ill., graph. Darst., Kt.
Institution: University of Vienna
Faculty: Historisch-Kulturwissenschaftliche Fakultät
Publication year: 2012
Language: ger ... Deutsch
Supervisor: Alram-Stern, Eva
Assessor: Alram-Stern, Eva
2. Assessor: Felten, Florens
Classification: 10 Geisteswissenschaften allgemein > 10.99 Geisteswissenschaften allgemein: Sonstiges
15 Geschichte > 15.17 Klassische Archäologie
15 Geschichte > 15.07 Kulturgeschichte
AC Number: AC09376592
Item ID: 20437
(Das PDF-Layout ist ident mit der Druckausgabe der Hochschulschrift.)

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