Redistribution in Aegean palatial societies. A View from outside the palace: the sanctuary and the Damos in Mycenaean economy and society

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Abstract

The Linear B offering tablets at first seem to indicate that Mycenaean palaces engaged in a form of redistribution with respect to the religious sphere. That the palace sent offerings caused many scholars to assume the religious sector was dependent on the palaces for its daily maintenance. The sanctuaries were therefore also thought to have been subject to palatial authority. However, more detailed analysis shows that the offerings could not have fully supported the sanctuaries, which eliminates the main argument used to support the idea that the sanctuaries were subject to palatial authority. This also indicates that the offerings cannot be interpreted as part of a real system of redistribution. Like the religious sphere, the individual communities found within palatial territory, referred to as da-mo, or damos, have been seen as subject to the political and economic control of the palace. However, a closer look at the textual evidence shows that each damos maintained a significant degree of independence from the palace. We may therefore posit (at least) three spheres of economic influence in Mycenaean states: the palace, the sanctuaries, and the damos.

LanguageEnglish
Pages207-217
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican Journal of Archaeology
Volume115
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes

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redistribution
economy
society
economic control
political control
Society
Economy
Redistribution
Sanctuary
Palace
community
evidence
economics
Religion

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Redistribution in Aegean palatial societies. A View from outside the palace : the sanctuary and the Damos in Mycenaean economy and society. / Lupack, Susan.

In: American Journal of Archaeology, Vol. 115, No. 2, 2011, p. 207-217.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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