University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Welcome to the Penn Museum blog. First launched in January 2009, the Museum blog now has over 800 posts covering a range of topics in the categories of Museum, Collection, Exhibitions, Research, and By Location. Here you’ll hear directly from our staff and Penn students about their work, research, experiences, and discoveries. To explore a topic of interest, please use the Blog Search function.


Digging up gold

32-27-1203. Gold earrings from Lapithos.

By: Sara Levin

When Penn archaeologists opened Tomb 6A in Lapithos, Cyprus in 1931, they discovered gold ornaments almost immediately. According to Virginia Grace, who wrote about the tomb and its contents in the American Journal of Archaeology nine years later (vol. 44 no.1), the gold objects first drew the excavators’ attention because “one of them caught the […]

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Jugs that rattle and roll

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By: Sara Levin

Continuing my condition survey of artifacts from Lapithos, Cyprus, I came across what seemed like a dull-looking Iron Age jug recently. But when I picked it up my ears perked—there were small objects rattling around inside. It may not be as pretty, but I realized that this jug is similar in shape and size to the rattling flask from Kourion […]

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Weapons and Fiber ID: Lapithos Survey Update

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By: Sara Levin

 The condition survey of artifacts from Lapithos, Cyprus continues. In my first post, I introduced the intricate lively designs on ceramic vessels by potters from the Bronze Age. I recently took a break from pottery and turned to the handiwork of Cypriot metalsmiths. 320 pieces in the collection are comprised of metal. These include bowls, […]

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An ancient eye for design: Bronze Age ceramics from Lapithos, Cyprus

Detail of the incised face and surrounding decoration.

By: Sara Levin

Prehistoric potters from Cyprus had a keen eye for design. Concentric circles, diamonds, and zig-zag patterns make some of the tiniest vessels come alive. I am Sara Levin, Kress Fellow in conservation, performing a condition survey of artifacts from Lapithos Vrysi tou Barba. This site in the north of the country is home to Bronze and Iron […]

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