Conference Proceedings

Thalassocratic charms: trees, boats, women and the sea in Minoan glyptic art

C Tully

Proceedings of the 12th International Congress of Cretan Studies | Society of Cretan Historical Studies | Published : 2018


This paper argues that four Minoan glyptic images which combine trees, human figures, boats and the sea represent the combination of native Minoan with Canaanite religious ideas concerning a tree goddess who also had power over the sea. Each image is a glyph of the protective power of the Minoan tree deity over maritime voyaging within the Aegean and eastern Mediterranean. The empowerment of seafaring expeditions through supernatural patronage emphasises Minoan land-based power over the sea and extends the Cretan landscape outward to incorporate the seascape. It is further proposed that the images functioned in a protective talismanic capacity and that the containment of the iconographic mot..

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