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Ayia Irini: Area B

By Natilie Abell


Area B, in the southeastern part of the Bronze Age town of Ayia Irini, Kea, preserves evidence for human activity from the mid-Early Bronze Age to the mid-Late Bronze Age, or Periods III–VII in the parlance of the site. This volume summarizes the results of excavation in the area and provides an overview of the stratigraphy, architecture, and artifacts found in it. Owing to its status as one of the best-excavated and best-documented sectors of the site, Area B also provides an excellent opportunity to consider diachronic changes in the ceramic assemblage through time. Analysis of macroscopic and petrographic fabrics and evaluation of how fabric, ware, and shape categories intersect enables a detailed, diachronic study of changes in pottery production, trade, and consumption patterns at the site in view of broader shifts in Aegean economy and society. 



“Abell deserves high praise for the meticulous care with which she presents the excavations, dating back almost 60 years, in a comprehensive way. She has also undertaken the most commendable task of continuing the publication project initially pursued by Aliki Bikaki (†2011) until 2008, setting her own priorities and bringing it to an excellent conclusion. Keos XII is an important contribution to the history and development of the settlement of Ayia Irini and the Aegean Bronze Age in general.…

“Abell deserves much credit for having made the most of the available material. The concept of the Keos series has especially been expanded by the detailed discussion of ceramic fabric groups and forming methods included in this volume. The well-founded and well-written holistic approach makes Keos XII a very important publication and contribution for Ayia Irini and the Aegean Bronze Age.”—Walter Gauß, Austrian Academy of Sciences; Austrian Archaeological Institute, Athens, in Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2023.05.20,


“Like other volumes in the Keos series, Abell’s contribution is a thorough, well-organized account of the excavations at Ayia Irini. Yet this book is also an important study of the phenomenon of Minoanization in its own right. The presentation of data relevant to the production and consumption of ceramics on Kea is commendable and should serve as a model for future work at the site and in the region.”—Jason W. Earle, The Institute for Aegean Prehistory, in American Journal of Archaeology 127.4 (2023),


“Abell achieves a valuable, detailed and methodical study, destined for endless revisitation. A narrative summary (Chapter 8) spotlighting Ayia Irini on the Aegean stage provides the easiest entry point for those unfamiliar with the site, and the complex ceramic landscape of the Bronze Age Aegean.”—David Michael Smith, Department of Archaeology, Classics and Egyptology University of Liverpool, UK, in Antiquity 97.392 (2023): 494–96,

Ayia Irini: Area B

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    Keos: Results of Excavations Conducted by the University of Cincinnati under the Auspices of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens XII

    xvii + 398 pages

    9 x 12 inches

    978-1-948488-57-0 (cloth)

    978-1-948488-67-9 (PDF)

    April 2022

  • Table of Contents

    List of Figures
    List of Plates
    List of Color Plates
    List of Table

    I. Introduction
    II. Stratigraphy, Architecture, and Pottery
    III. Ceramic Fabrics and Forming Methods
    IV. Early Bronze Age Ceramic Analysis
    V. Middle Bronze Age Ceramic Analysis
    VI. Period VI Ceramic Analysis
    VII. Period VII Ceramic Analysis
    VIII. Area B, Ayia Irini, and hte Wider Aegean

        I. Concordance of Room Numbers
        II. Concordance of Inventory Numbers to Catalogue Numbers
        III. Ware Designations
        IV. Descriptions of Macroscopic Fabric Groups
        V. Petrographic Descriptions
        VI. Fabric Group Munsell Colors
        VII. Results of Wave-Dispersive X-ray Fluorescence
        VIII. Excavation Unit Information 


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