Ritual and daily life in the prehistoric Eastern Mediterranean: | E-Learning University of Athens

Ritual and daily life in the prehistoric Eastern Mediterranean:

Ritual and daily life in the prehistoric Eastern Mediterranean:
Ritual and daily life in the prehistoric Eastern Mediterranean:
An archaeological approach

This online course explores the archaeological evidence from the Aegean area, Cyprus and other regions of eastern Mediterranean during prehistoric/protohistoric times, focusing on specific subjects. This programme comprises four different modules. Each module is divided into three or four lessons. Each lesson will be accompanied with relevant iconographic material, selective bibliography as well as comprehensive chronological tables. The content of the modules focuses on presenting:

  • the most popular imaginary creatures in Minoan iconography

  • the diseases and the cure methods/practices in Egypt, Mesopotamia and the Aegean during later Prehistory

  • The design methods of models uncovered in Crete and Cyprus with references to respective Egyptian products

and lastly the significance of the Minoan Rituals and their relation to the rituals of modern civilizations.


Professor of Prehistoric Archaeology

The programme addresses not only students of Archaeology but also the broader public, especially those with a particular interest in prehistoric/protohistoric times in broader eastern Mediterranean area. 

The subjects have been carefully selected taking into consideration not only current research trends but also what interests the general public. The aim of the programme is to present archaeological evidence from the Aegean area, Cyprus and other regions of eastern Mediterranean during prehistoric/protohistoric times, focusing on specific subjects. Thus, themes include a. the monsters and other hybrid creatures depicted in prehistoric art and possibly connected with magical and religious beliefs, b. the medical and therapeutical practices of the prehistoric communities in the east Mediterranean, c. the significance of house and other models of clay deposited in tombs, sanctuaries and other type of sites  and d. the presentation and discussion of a series of rites as integral part of the human activity which are documented in the archaeological record of the aforementioned areas.

Module 1
Hybrid and monstrous creatures in Minoan iconography

Lesson 1 Griffin-unica-sphinx
Lesson 2 Minoan genius -minoan dragon
Lesson 3 The human-bird creatures -minotaur-other bipod creatures –gorgoneion

Module 2
Disease and Therapy: medical and other therapeutical practices in prehistoric eastern Mediterranean 

Lesson 4 Egyptian medicine
Lesson 5 The performance: physicians – magicians - Mesopotamia- Diseases mentioned in Mesopotamian Texts
Lesson 6 Rare diseases-Aegean cultures - Remedies -Peak Sanctuaries
Lesson 7 Skeletal remains

Module 3
Modeling everyday life in Aegean and Cyprus with reference to Egypt

Lesson 8 Introduction- Models of Minoan Crete
Lesson 9 Cyprus: Pottery decorated with figures (I)
Lesson 10 Cyprus: Pottery decorated with figures (II)- Autonomous Models
Lesson 11 Egyptian Models-Conclusions

Module 4
Ritual performance in Minoan Crete: archaeological and iconographic evidence

Lesson 12 Introduction- Archaeological and Iconographic evidence(Sacrifice Ritual)
Lesson 13 Iconographic Evidence (Baetylic - Robe Rituals)
Lesson 14 Iconographic Evidence (Flower Ritual -Initiation Rites)
Lesson 15 Iconographic Evidence (Dance Ritual- Procession- Music)

The  assessment  methods will be based on  a mixture of open and closed type questions. 

Online and distance learning at National and Kapodistrian University of Athens offers a new way of combining innovative learning and teaching techniques with interaction with your tutor and fellow students from around the world.

The e-learning programme is implemented via a user-friendly educational platform adjusted to the Distance Learning Principles. Programmes are structured as weekly online meetings; interaction with the programme tutor and other students takes place in a virtual learning environment. The programmes are designed to fit around your schedule; you access the programme whenever it is convenient for you.

The whole world becomes your classroom as e-learning can be done on laptops, tablets and phones – it is a very mobile method. Learning can be done on the train, on a plane or even during your trip to Greece!

The educational platform is a portal that offers access to electronic classrooms based on modern distance learning technologies. The computer based nature of training means new technology is being introduced all the time to help students engage and learn in a tailored way that will meet their needs. Each e-classroom is similar to a traditional teaching classroom. Students have access to e-classrooms with their personal code number in order to browse  the teaching material, to being informed about the latest news/updates and interact with their instructors. Moreover, through own personal e-mail account through which they can contact directly their mentors or the administration office of the programme and share any concerns or anxieties related to the programme and make the most form their experience.

In each programme, learners submit the corresponding tests, within the deadline given by their instructors. Final mark fluctuates from 0 to 100%. The overall grade in each programme is calculated based on the student's marks on assessment exercises that follow each unit  while their instructor might also assign them with a final assessment at the end of the programme. Finally, if the total score on one or more lessons of the programme does not exceed 50%, students can ask for reassessment.

During the programme students will be attending lectures and group seminars presented by academics and speakers from the National University of Athens as well as from other Universities, Research Institutes and Cultural organizations around Greece. In addition, when you study with us, you have online access to first-class resources relevant to your programme – plus you can browse material in other subject areas.

Every week e-learners are provided with the relevant material , either  video-lectures or  typed notes and relevant resources or a combination of both.

Interactivity, lower costs and our long experience guarantees that studying with us will offer a successful and rewarding experience. Finally, the access to a large variety of material and online resources available in each unit aims to excite your curiosity and guide you in studying further on your favourite topic will the online material which can be downloaded will give you the opportunity to quickly refresh your memory after the completion of the programme.