Guide Dress and Identity in the Arts of Western Anatolia: The Seventh through Fourth Centuries BCE

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The Phrygians spoke Phrygian , an Indo-European language. Some contemporary historians, among whom Strabo is the best known, considered the Phrygians to be a Thracian tribe, [4] part of a wider " Thraco-Phrygian " group. Other linguists dismiss this hypothesis since Thracian and hence Daco-Thracian seems to belong to the Satem group of Indo-European languages, while Phrygian shared several similarities with other Indo-European languages of the Centum group like Latin, Greek or the Anatolian languages.

According to this second group of linguists, of all the Indo-European languages, Phrygian seems to have been most closely linked to Greek, suggesting that the two languages belonged to the same dialectal subgroup of early Indo-European. Although the Phrygians adopted the alphabet originated by the Phoenicians and ultimately from Ancient Egyptians, only a few dozen inscriptions in the Phrygian language have been found, primarily funereal, so much of what is thought to be known of Phrygia is second-hand information from Greek sources. Based on archaeological evidence, some scholars such as Nicholas Hammond and Eugene N.

Borza argue that the Phrygians were members of the Lusatian culture that migrated into the southern Balkans during the Late Bronze Age. A conventional date of c. Following this date, Phrygia retained a separate cultural identity. In classical Greek iconography the Trojan Paris is represented as non-Greek by his Phrygian cap, which was worn by Mithras and survived into modern imagery as the " Liberty cap " of the American and French revolutionaries. Phrygia developed an advanced Bronze Age culture. The earliest traditions of Greek music are in part connected to Phrygian music, transmitted through the Greek colonies in Anatolia, especially the Phrygian mode , which was considered to be the warlike mode in ancient Greek music.


Phrygian Midas , the king of the "golden touch", was tutored in music by Orpheus himself, according to the myth. Another musical invention that came from Phrygia was the aulos , a reed instrument with two pipes. Marsyas , the satyr who first formed the instrument using the hollowed antler of a stag , was a Phrygian follower of Cybele. He unwisely competed in music with the Olympian Apollo and inevitably lost, whereupon Apollo flayed Marsyas alive and provocatively hung his skin on Cybele's own sacred tree, a pine.

It was the "Great Mother", Cybele , as the Greeks and Romans knew her, who was originally worshipped in the mountains of Phrygia, where she was known as "Mountain Mother". In her typical Phrygian form, she wears a long belted dress, a polos a high cylindrical headdress , and a veil covering the whole body. The later version of Cybele was established by a pupil of Phidias , the sculptor Agoracritus , and became the image most widely adopted by Cybele's expanding following, both in the Aegean world and at Rome.

It shows her humanized though still enthroned, her hand resting on an attendant lion and the other holding the tympanon , a circular frame drum, similar to a tambourine. The Phrygians also venerated Sabazios , the sky and father- god depicted on horseback. Although the Greeks associated Sabazios with Zeus , representations of him, even at Roman times, show him as a horseman god.

His conflicts with the indigenous Mother Goddess, whose creature was the Lunar Bull , may be surmised in the way that Sabazios' horse places a hoof on the head of a bull, in a Roman relief at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. The name of the earliest known mythical king was Nannacus aka Annacus. The next king mentioned in extant classical sources was called Manis or Masdes. According to Plutarch, because of his splendid exploits, great things were called "manic" in Phrygia.

One of the kings was Tantalus who ruled over the north western region of Phrygia around Mount Sipylus. Tantalus was endlessly punished in Tartarus , because he allegedly killed his son Pelops and sacrificially offered him to the Olympians, a reference to the suppression of human sacrifice. Tantalus was also falsely accused of stealing from the lotteries he had invented.

In the mythic age before the Trojan war , during a time of an interregnum , Gordius or Gordias , a Phrygian farmer, became king, fulfilling an oracular prophecy. The kingless Phrygians had turned for guidance to the oracle of Sabazios "Zeus" to the Greeks at Telmissus , in the part of Phrygia that later became part of Galatia. They had been instructed by the oracle to acclaim as their king the first man who rode up to the god's temple in a cart. That man was Gordias Gordios, Gordius , a farmer, who dedicated the ox-cart in question, tied to its shaft with the " Gordian Knot ".

Gordias refounded a capital at Gordium in west central Anatolia, situated on the old trackway through the heart of Anatolia that became Darius 's Persian "Royal Road" from Pessinus to Ancyra , and not far from the River Sangarius. Later mythic kings of Phrygia were alternately named Gordias and Midas. Each figure wears a short-sleeved long tunic chiton possibly of linen the fine texture is indicated by closely 76 Schmidt , Pl.

Indeed Dutz and Matheson , 54 identify the group as Ionian and Lydian. Root , accepts the ambiguities, but identifies the group as Greeks and their colonies, not including the Lydians. She provides , n a summary of all different scholarly identifications.

Dress And Identity In The Arts Of Western Anatolia The Seventh Through Fourth Centuries Bce

The tassels sticking out from one of the two folded cloths indicate that these textiles are the representations of the two-piece garment the figures are wearing, a himation with tassels and a short-sleeved long chiton fig. Also slightly different is the dress of the figures. Over their thin chiton the figures appear to wear a himation without tassels but with decorated borders, draped over on both shoulders.

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Again, the two- piece dress northern delegates wear is possibly identical to the folded cloths they are bringing as gifts to the king. She links this difference in the presentation manner of Group XII with the Achaemenid perception of these textiles simply as commodities rather than display ob- jects, a notion emphasizing the total Greek submission.

Indeed, a fresco fragment from Harta Tomb in Lydia shows a processional scene with a figure bearing white folded textiles in his hand in the manner of the Apadana bearers fig. She carefully shows that all possibilities have some sort of associations with Ionians and Lydians of Western Asia Minor. In every case, she shows that the gifts would have been perceived as effeminate to a male Athenian looking at the Apadana reliefs. Johannes Lydus, in his account of luxurious robes invented by Lydians, along with gold woven chitons counts the sandykes, a fine linen transpar- ent chiton, which caused Lydian women to appear to be wearing nothing Though the style of the Harta figure points to an earlier period, radio- carbon dating places the tomb in the late fifth century As an indigenous representational source, the folded textile bearer at Harta testifies to the continued production of high quality linen garments worthy of royals in Lydia.

This detailed investigation of the Apadana reliefs clearly demonstrates that one of the major economic contributions of the Western Anatolians to the economy of the Persian Empire was the textile industry, with cloths made of high quality wool and fine linen.

Fabrics and Patterns Two main fabrics, wool and linen, seem to have been used for the manufacture of a variety of clothes in Western Anatolia. Though there is no direct evidence, mohair made from the silky hair of the Angora goat from ancient Angora in Phrygia could have been another fabric manufac- tured exclusively in ancient Anatolia. Felt, due to its tough and waterproof quality, was reserved for the making of headdresses, floor coverings, belts and shoes. Though the material evidence is lacking, the different textures of vari- ous fabrics can be detected in Western Anatolian art as early as the sev- enth century.

The heavier woolen tunics, on the other hand, appear without pleats and with a variety of decorative bands. A great example is the seventh century Toprakkale medallion fig. The fashion seems to have been used to signify a high social status and thus reserved for the elite. Originally a Mesopotamian fashion, fringes, basically loose threads at the edges of a certain length of cloth reshaped in the production process of a garment and used especially at the hem for decorative purposes, appear both as part of female and male dress Zincirli woman and her scribe on the eight-century Neo-Hittite relief wear tunics with fringes fig.

Ionians and Lydians who appear wearing tasseled himations on the fifth century Apadana reliefs and the fourth century inventory lists from Heraion of Samos, which mention Lydian chitons with fringes, indi- cate that the fashion continued into the fourth century Also popular are meanders, double hooks, and spiral armed crosses In the sixth century, new motifs such as rosettes, bud chains, lotus flowers, and animal figures demonstrate that Achaemenid influence increasingly enters into the Anatolian repertoire Though the artistic evidence for the early periods is lacking, patterns with human and animal figures are also favored in Ionia.

From Homer to Pliny, literary sources describe legendary women all around the Aegean, such as Helen of Troy, Arakhne, and Penelope, as weaving mythological stories into the cloth they are looming. Dresses with figural bands also appear in Greek vase painting Perhaps the only archaeological evidence comes from Pantikapaion, a Milesian colony founded on the northern coast of the Black Sea in the seventh century.

The cold climate of the region enabled the preservation of the textiles in the Kurgan burials until their discovery in the 19th century. A large woolen cloth used to cover a wooden sarcophagus in Kurgan 6 consists at least a dozen of friezes with mytho- logical, animal, floral, and geometric figures The burial dates to the early fourth century, but the carefully mended cloth might have been manufac- tured much earlier.

The cloth is likely of local production94, but is similar to the Milesian textiles with figural bands mentioned by Democritus. The figural representations from Anatolia also hint at the tailoring techniques used in the region. The construction of the clothes implies a Western Anatolian preference for clearly sized and shaped to fit sleeved tunics rather than loose large rectangles of woven fabrics shaped with pins and by folding such as the Greek peplos.

Fibulae and belts are also used extensively, but without the primary function of fastening to the body a large piece of cloth worn as a garment. Barber , fig. One can trace the tradition of the Western Anatolian high-quality textile production, of which fame swept the Roman Empire, all the way back to the Bronze Age. Akurgal Akurgal, E.

Dress And Identity In The Arts Of Western Anatolia The Seventh Through Fourth Centuries Bce

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