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Excavations uncover Aegean bronze mirror at Hal Sultan Tekke

Archaeologists have uncovered an Aegean bronze mirror during excavations at Hal Sultan Tekke, Cyprus.

Hal Sultan Tekke is a Late Bronze Age harbour city and cemetery on the south-eastern coast of Cyprus.

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The cemetery covers an area of several hectares, in which subsequent excavations have uncovered tombs with associated pits and wells, but no architectural remains.

Archaeologists have recently excavated three tombs within an undisturbed chamber tomb where 264 complete objects have been recovered from Mycenaean, Minoan, Canaanite, Egyptian, and Levantine cultures.

The objects include everyday items such as jars, beads, bowls, vases, chalices, cups, in addition to funerary or votive offerings such as knives, daggers, a spear head, bracelets, rings and decorated discs.

The most notable discovery is a rare copper alloy mirror disc, which according to the researchers likely originates from the Aegean, in particular Crete.

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The mirror has a diameter ranging between 11.2–11.4 cm, rendering it slightly broader and wider than in height. Neither the rivets nor the handle are preserved, which were likely crafted from perishable materials such as wood, ivory, or bone.

Apart from the mirror discovered at Hala Sultan Tekke, only one other riveted mirror is documented in Cyprus, discovered in Enkomi Tomb 66.

According to the study authors: “Although the handle type supporting the riveted mirror from Hala Sultan Tekke remains unknown, its diameter might well align with the average diameter and weight of mirrors produced in central-northern Crete during LM IIIA1–2.”

“This production, probably resulting from the activities of workshops located in Knossos and possibly in Chania, represents a relatively homogenous group of artefacts in terms of measurements, with production ceasing in the subsequent LM IIIB.”

Header Image Credit : Wiley

Sources : Feldbacher, R.Alvarez, L. E.Miyauchi, Y.Lorentz, K., and Fischer, P. M. (2024AN AEGEAN MIRROR FROM HALA SULTAN TEKKE, CYPRUSOxford Journal of Archaeology43153172https://doi.org/10.1111/ojoa.12292.

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Mark Milligan
Mark Milligan
Mark Milligan is multi-award-winning journalist and the Managing Editor at HeritageDaily. His background is in archaeology and computer science, having written over 7,500 articles across several online publications. Mark is a member of the Association of British Science Writers (ABSW), the World Federation of Science Journalists, and in 2023 was the recipient of the British Citizen Award for Education, the BCA Medal of Honour, and the UK Prime Minister's Points of Light Award.
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