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Sphakia Survey: The Internet Edition

Sand Fabrics

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Fabric Group





16. Sand with fine calcareous

A yellow to pinkish tan, medium fabric with well-sorted medium to fine, multi-coloured sand temper. Inclusions are an even mix of quartz, small calcareous, occasional red ferrous, fine silverblue siltstone and chert. The quartz grits often fall out leaving a fine spongy-looking surface.


Roman to Late Roman. But there is a very similar fabric from Skaloti Profitis Ilias (8.72) which is a scored ware and clearly Early Minoan in date.

Very similar to some amphora fabrics from Cilicia.

The Sphakia examples may be imports from there.





Ag. Eustratigos (8.38)

Phoinix-Loutro (5.11)


17. Sand family with black glassy mineral

A medium-coarse red to orange/brown fabric of mixed sand. Inclusions are generally sub-rounded (sometimes sub-angular to angular) and are dominated by black glassy minerals (e.g. obsidian) and often tourmaline. Minerals are fairly large (ca. 2-5 mm); other common inclusions are silver mica, and milky and glassy quartz. The paste is well-refined and much finer than the minerals. Breaks are grainy and gritty, while surfaces tend to be very hard and slightly gritty/sandy. Macroscopic inclusion density varies from 20-40%.

Cooking pots (including Pompeian Red Ware), amphoras, and, less frequently, small bowls.

Primarily a Roman fabric; earliest example is Hellenistic (ca. 200 BC). Most common in Late Hellenistic/Early Roman (1st c. BC/AD), although an occasional Roman-Late Roman example appears.

Most of this comes from Italy (Campania), based on volcanic inclusions. Found in Sphakia in Regions 1 (2), 2 (2), 3 (2), 4 (33), 5 (5) and 6 (5).





Peradoro: Bee enclosure (1.09)

Ponta (4.08)


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