Dynastic Deeds

Poggio, Alessandro. 2020. Dynastic Deeds: Hunt scenes in the funerary imagery of the Achaemenid Eastern Mediterranean. Oxford: British Archaeological Reports.

This study adopts a transregional approach that focuses on connectivity dynamics in order to present a wider picture of artistic, cultural and political phenomena in the Mediterranean. It examines dynastic funerary art at the end of the fifth century and in the fourth century BC by focusing – through a wide range of evidence – on what funerary images can reveal about the societies that produced them. It analyses renowned dynastic tombs from south-western Anatolia (present-day Turkey) such as the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus and the Nereid Monument of Xanthos, but also from Phoenicia (present-day Lebanon). A common element among the similarities displayed by these tombs is the nearly constant presence of the multiple-quarry hunt iconography, which consists of prey from different species depicted in one figurative programme. The Eastern Mediterranean under Persian Achaemenid rule is portrayed as an interconnected cultural and political area with specific features instead of merely being an area between the Greek and Persian worlds. << Less

Table of Contents:

Title page
Copyright page
Of Related Interest
Table of contents
List of Illustrations
The hunt and power
A new transregional approach
The visual evidence under examination
Circulation of materials, people, and ideas
The multiple-quarry hunt: status quaestionis
Visual evidence: transmediality
Literary sources
Methodological reference studies
Socio-political issues
Outline of chapters

  1. Historical and Artistic Background
    1.1. The Eastern Mediterranean under Persian rule
    1.2. The Eastern Mediterranean as an interconnected area
    1.3. “Graeco-Persian” art and culture
  2. Dynastic Tombs and Artistic Phenomena
    2.1. A regional survey
    2.1.1. Caria
    2.1.2. Lycia
    2.1.3. Phoenicia
    2.2. A comparative analysis of dynastic tombs
    2.2.1. Topography and display
    2.2.2. The figurative programmes
    2.3. Artistic phenomena under the dynasts
    2.3.1. Circulation and mobility
    2.3.2. Workshop practices
    2.4. Conclusion
  3. The Multiple-Quarry Hunt: History of an Iconography
    3.1. The Eastern Mediterranean and the Near East before the Persian Empire
    3.1.1. The Syro-Anatolian area
    3.1.2. The Assyrians
    3.1.3. The Levant and Cyprus
    3.2. The multiple-quarry hunt in Persia
    3.3. The multiple-quarry hunt in the Greek world
    3.4. Conclusion
  4. Images of Multiple-Quarry Hunts in the Eastern Mediterranean
    4.1. The hunt and dynastic ideology in the Eastern Mediterranean
    4.2. The iconography of the multiple-quarry hunt
    4.2.1. Dynastic funerary monuments
    4.2.2. Further sculptural evidence from western Anatolia
    4.2.3. A typological appraisal
    4.2.4. The contribution of glyptic: the Graeco-Persian tabloid seals
    4.3. The iconology of multiple-quarry hunts
    4.3.1. Sequence of prey
    4.3.2. Hunting techniques
    4.3.3. The bear hunt
    4.3.4. Mythological hunts
    4.3.5. Geography
    4.3.6. Timeframe
    4.4. Conclusion
  5. The Hunt as Mirror of Social Structure
    5.1. Number of participants
    5.1.1. Hunting scenes
    5.1.2. Preparation and return scenes
    5.2. Main hunters
    5.2.1. The dynast
    5.2.2. The dynast’s family
    5.3. Hunting and hierarchies: the dynast’s retinue
    5.3.1. Friends and dignitaries
    5.3.2. Servants
    5.4. Horses
    5.5. Hunt participants in action: accidents
    5.6. Conclusion
  6. Conclusion: Hunting, Politics, and Tradition
    6.1. Competition
    6.2. Spread
    Index of Passages
    General Index