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Aquatic animal resources in Prehistoric Aegean, Greece.

Mylona D - J Biol Res (Thessalon) (2014)

Bottom Line: In the Neolithic period, the adoption of a sedentary, agro-pastoral way of life led to a reduction in the intensity of fishing and shellfish gathering.Its importance as an economic resource remained high only in certain regions of rich, eutrophic waters.The broadening of collaboration between archaeology and physical sciences offers new means to explore these issues in a more thorough and nuanced manner.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Institute of Aegean Prehistory for East Crete, 59 E. Daskalaki, 74100 Rethymno, Greece.

ABSTRACT
This paper explores the early stages in the history of fishing in the Aegean Sea in Greece, and highlights its formative phases and its specific characteristics in different points in time. This is testified by various physical remains, such as fish bones, fishing tools, and representations in art, which are gathered in the course of archaeological research. The aquatic resources in the Aegean Sea have been exploited and managed for millennia by communities that lived near the water and often made a living from it. The earliest evidence for a systematic, intensive exploitation of marine resources in the Aegean Sea dates to the Mesolithic, eleven millennia ago. In the Neolithic period, the adoption of a sedentary, agro-pastoral way of life led to a reduction in the intensity of fishing and shellfish gathering. Its importance as an economic resource remained high only in certain regions of rich, eutrophic waters. In the Bronze Age, an era of social complexity and centralized economy, the exploitation of aquatic, mostly marine, resources became a complex, multi-faceted activity which involved subsistence, industry and ideology. The range of preferred fish and invertebrate species, the fishing technology, and the processing of fish and shellfish in order to produce elaborate foods or prestige items are all traceable aspects of the complex relationship between humans and the aquatic resources throughout the prehistory of fishing and shellfish gathering in the Aegean area. The broadening of collaboration between archaeology and physical sciences offers new means to explore these issues in a more thorough and nuanced manner.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Idaeon Andron, Rethymno. Ritual scene with a triton (Charonia sp.) shell in use (CMS-II, 3-007-1).
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Fig9: Idaeon Andron, Rethymno. Ritual scene with a triton (Charonia sp.) shell in use (CMS-II, 3-007-1).

Mentions: Shellfish gathering for special purposes other than the culinary was fairly different. It targeted species of deeper waters and it required diving skills and/or specialised technology both for the capture and processing of these animals. The fan mussel (Pinna nobilis), the purple shellfish (Muricidae) and the tritons (Charonia sp.) are some such species. The fun mussels were used for the production of decorative iridescent inlays [72]. The tritons were used modified or in their natural state as vessels for transferring liquids, as ceremonial vessels and as musical instruments (FigureĀ 9) [73]. Large quantities of purple shellfish were used for the systematic production of purple dye on an industrial scale, from as early as 1800 BC [74].Figure 9


Aquatic animal resources in Prehistoric Aegean, Greece.

Mylona D - J Biol Res (Thessalon) (2014)

Idaeon Andron, Rethymno. Ritual scene with a triton (Charonia sp.) shell in use (CMS-II, 3-007-1).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4376368&req=5

Fig9: Idaeon Andron, Rethymno. Ritual scene with a triton (Charonia sp.) shell in use (CMS-II, 3-007-1).
Mentions: Shellfish gathering for special purposes other than the culinary was fairly different. It targeted species of deeper waters and it required diving skills and/or specialised technology both for the capture and processing of these animals. The fan mussel (Pinna nobilis), the purple shellfish (Muricidae) and the tritons (Charonia sp.) are some such species. The fun mussels were used for the production of decorative iridescent inlays [72]. The tritons were used modified or in their natural state as vessels for transferring liquids, as ceremonial vessels and as musical instruments (FigureĀ 9) [73]. Large quantities of purple shellfish were used for the systematic production of purple dye on an industrial scale, from as early as 1800 BC [74].Figure 9

Bottom Line: In the Neolithic period, the adoption of a sedentary, agro-pastoral way of life led to a reduction in the intensity of fishing and shellfish gathering.Its importance as an economic resource remained high only in certain regions of rich, eutrophic waters.The broadening of collaboration between archaeology and physical sciences offers new means to explore these issues in a more thorough and nuanced manner.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Institute of Aegean Prehistory for East Crete, 59 E. Daskalaki, 74100 Rethymno, Greece.

ABSTRACT
This paper explores the early stages in the history of fishing in the Aegean Sea in Greece, and highlights its formative phases and its specific characteristics in different points in time. This is testified by various physical remains, such as fish bones, fishing tools, and representations in art, which are gathered in the course of archaeological research. The aquatic resources in the Aegean Sea have been exploited and managed for millennia by communities that lived near the water and often made a living from it. The earliest evidence for a systematic, intensive exploitation of marine resources in the Aegean Sea dates to the Mesolithic, eleven millennia ago. In the Neolithic period, the adoption of a sedentary, agro-pastoral way of life led to a reduction in the intensity of fishing and shellfish gathering. Its importance as an economic resource remained high only in certain regions of rich, eutrophic waters. In the Bronze Age, an era of social complexity and centralized economy, the exploitation of aquatic, mostly marine, resources became a complex, multi-faceted activity which involved subsistence, industry and ideology. The range of preferred fish and invertebrate species, the fishing technology, and the processing of fish and shellfish in order to produce elaborate foods or prestige items are all traceable aspects of the complex relationship between humans and the aquatic resources throughout the prehistory of fishing and shellfish gathering in the Aegean area. The broadening of collaboration between archaeology and physical sciences offers new means to explore these issues in a more thorough and nuanced manner.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus