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.


Post-doctoral Researcher
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 training learning at National and Kapodistrian University of Athens offers a new way of combining innovative learning and training techniques with interaction with your tutor and fellow trainees from around the world.

The e-learning course is implemented via a user-friendly educational platform adjusted to the Distance Learning Principles. Courses are structured as weekly online meetings; interaction with the course tutor and other trainees takes place in a digital learning environment. The courses are designed to fit around your schedule; you access the course whenever it is convenient for you, however within the given deadlines.

The whole world becomes your classroom as e-learning can be done on laptops, tablets and phones as 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 educational material based on modern distance learning technologies. The computer based nature of training means new technology is being introduced all the time to help trainees engage and learn in a tailored way that will meet their needs. E-learners have access to the educational platform with their personal code number in order to browse all relevant training material and interact with their instructors.

Moreover, an online communication system through own personal e-mail account is available in order to make the process easier and more interactive. Trainees can contact directly their tutors or the administration office of the course and share any concerns or anxieties related to the course in order to make the most of their experience.

Every week e-learners are provided with the relevant material, delivered either in the form of video-lectures, text notes and relevant presentations or as a combination of them. The educational material of the course is uploaded gradually, per educational unit. During the course, important info for the smooth conduct of the educational process, such as timetables for the submission of the exercises are announced on the Announcement section of the platform.

For successful completion of the course the e-learner should have fulfill her/his academic obligations, meaning should have submitted all corresponding assessment exercises and have achieved at least an average of 50% grade in the corresponding tests for each module. The score scale ranges from 0 to 100%. Finally, if the total score on one or more lessons of the course does not exceed 50%, trainees can ask for reassessment.

During the course trainees will be attending a training experience designed by academics and lecturers from the National University of Athens as well as from other Universities, Research Institutes and Cultural organizations around Greece.

Interactivity, flexibility and our long tradition guarantee that learning with us offers a successful and rewarding experience. Finally, access to a large variety of material and online resources available in each unit aims to excite your curiosity and guide you in exploring further your favourite topic. Part of the online material can be downloaded providing the chance to quickly refresh your memory after the completion of the course.