Day 62: Thursday, June 8 (That’s a wrap!)

Friends,

Today was our final day in Greece. We spent our final class hours in the National Archaeology Museum, and while some of us didn’t give it a second thought, we were able to classify pottery with so much more ease than when PCC set us to the same task ten weeks before. You know what that means?

We grew! We know so much more than we did when we started this trip, some of us as sophomores and some as juniors, and now we move up to juniors and seniors. I’m proud of us.

I’m proud of us for so many reasons. It’s not just that we walk away able to tentatively say “I’m an archaeologist, I have a database on the past and its wonders in my mind, I love Athens and hate the Persians, the Derveni Krater is the most beautiful thing on this Earth and that’s not just me making fun of PCC,” but that we walk away with irreplaceable experiences and as people who feel like they know themselves just a little bit more with the help of two great profs, a handsome TA, and ten of the most amazing people I have ever met.

We walk away with the Greek countryside etched into our minds and our hands, with all its hardships and beauties impressed upon us forever. The soil of endless rolling mountains and plains will stay stuck under our fingernails and the sea salt will remain in our lungs forever. It was a once in a lifetime experience, and I think I can safely speak for us all when I say this: to the twelve other people on this trip, thank you. To the ten other students, I love you, I miss you, and I can’t wait to see you again.

We walk away hand in hand, strong despite the tears, knowing this was the best three months of our lives.

Sincerely,

Victoria Corwin and my ten new best friends: Max Barg, Michael Bodek, Ben Bonner, Saphfire Brown, Grace Caldwell, Tim Conner, Natalie Ferneau, Max Frankel, Shania Kee, Dan Pomerantz

Thanks for following.

PS

A note from DA TA Tim Shea

Hi everyone,

I wanted to send my deepest thanks to Professor Paul Christesen, Professor Julie Hruby, and to the Dartmouth Foreign Study Programs Office for allowing me to be an assistant on this program. I am thankful that Duke let me slip away for semester in order to be an assistant on this FSP. All parties were accommodating leading up to and throughout the trip, and made me feel like I was part of the Dartmouth community.

I also wanted to extend a warm thank you to the students who participated in the program. Being surrounded by such intellectually engaged and mature students reminds me why I entered this field in the first place and revitalized my passion for the ancient world. I hope that all of you will stay in touch with me over the years.

To the friends and family members who followed the blog, you are lucky to have such brilliant men and women in your lives. I hope that those of you who followed along were able to get a sense of the scope of this FSP and the joys and turmoils that any trip like this entails.

Thanks again to all involved,
Tim Shea

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Day 61: Wednesday, June 7

Site Visited: CHS Nafplio

Leaders: ?

Hi everyone,

Because all of the students are diligently working, I thought that I would take over the blog for the day. Most of the students are busy tidying up their final papers before the 8:30 pm deadline. Some are working at the Center for Hellenic Studies near the old Venetian harbor of Nafplio, while others seem to be working from their hotel rooms.

All of us have enjoyed our time on the FSP, but I think I speak for all of the students, when I say that we are ready to have these papers over with.

Thanks for following our blog over the last couple months (I am looking at you Spain and Bulgaria).

Best,
TA Tim Shea

Day 60: Tuesday, June 6

Site Visited: Lerna

Leaders: Frankel and Shania

In the morning we went to Lerna,
Middle Helladic but without a Taverna,
Some people forgot their ID’s,
We saw lots of lemon trees.
The were some pretty cool bricks
Max Barg was picking up sticks.
They still call it a corridor house,
Nobody lives there except a mouse.
On the bus back to Nafplio we went,
Our archaeological curiosity spent.
It was time to write our papers,
Or time for Choriatiki with Capers.
I hope you enjoyed hearing rhymes
Good bye; until next times!

-Shania “McFlowDaddy” Kee and Max “#Creative” Frankel

Day 59: Sunday, June 4

Site Visited: Corinth

Leaders: Tim and Vic

Salvete omnes!

Today we spent our free mornings working on our final papers, and after grabbing lunch we hopped on board the Spiros Express to Corinth for the afternoon. Unfortunately, our guide for the day missed his flight from Croatia yesterday and left us flying solo, but Professor Hruby, Tim, and Katie from the Corinth Museum did an admirable job of guiding us through the site. Although our hike up the incredibly imposing Akrocorinth was cut short by an unexpected 3:00 closing time, we managed to survey the area before reconvening at its base and going over the basic history of the site.

We spent rest of our afternoon dividing our time between the museum and the ancient site, which with the exception of the extremely early Temple of Apollo is almost entirely Roman. When the Romans first captured Corinth, the city was the capital of the Achaean League, and as a result the displeased Romans burned most of the settlement to the ground, killed all its men, and enslaved all its women and children. All in a day’s work for a bunch of angry legionaries. The museum is full of amazing Roman portrait sculpture and mosaics, as well as two colossal statues of captive Phrygians, who are shown wearing their barbaric Phrygian caps and – worst of all – pants, which were unthinkable for any self–respecting Roman. We wrapped up the day by splitting up and delivering brief presentations on a handful of the buildings throughout the site before hopping back on the bus and heading back to Nafplio for the evening.

Vale et cureas!

Victoria and Tim

Day 58: Saturday, June 3

Sites Visited: Nemea, Tiryns

Leaders: Nat and Dan

Hiya peeps,

Today we went to Nemea. Nemea is famous because it’s where the mythical lion from the 12 labors of Hercules lived. Unfortunately we met no magic lions but we did get a really great site tour from Liz Langridge-Noti. We got to explore all around the site include go inside the temple which we usually can’t do. In antiquity Nemea hosted athletic contests much like Olympia and Delphi. There is an intact stadium at the site so of course we all ran on it to test it out! Frankel won the race, but no one else was trying, so does it even count?

After our quick sprint (or jog depending on your level of try-hard) we grabbed a quick lunch then headed to the Mycenaean palace of Tiryns. Tiryns is cool because it has GIANT walls and is on a big hill. Definitely not something you would have wanted to attack! Inside the fortress there are corbelled galleries that no one really knows what they were used for. Scientists have found evidence that they held sheep at one point in time but no way of telling if they are ancient or not. So mysterious sheep lived in Tiryns at some point in the last 3500 years, but that’s all we know.

After Tiryns a bunch of us went and got ice cream and loukamades (fried dough balls smothered in honey and cinnamon) on Dartmouth’s dime. We got treated because today was super hot and we were “troopers”. Thanks Dartmouth! We were all pretty wiped after our long hot day and ice cream coma and went home to write our papers.

Hasta la pasta
Dan Pomegranate and Nat Geographic

Day 57: Friday, June 2

Hey Folks,

Today we started off the morning at the Archaeological Museum of Nafplion where we got to see some of the coolest (and earliest) artifacts in Greece. The museum featured finds from the Paleolithic, Mesolithic, and Neolithic periods of prehistory. That’s super old!

The museum also had the best example of a full Mycenaean suit of armor. It looked heavy and cumbersome, but it would probably prevent someone from killing you with a bronze weapon. The armor looked so difficult to move around in that archeologists suspect the suit’s owner drove a chariot and did not actually engage in hand-to-hand combat. I feel bad for the horses lugging that tinman around.

After the museum, we had the option of going to the Nafplio Folklore Museum or going to get some mid-morning espresso freddos (iced coffees). The folklore museum had beautiful displays showing traditional Greek garb and arranged example layouts of historical Greek rooms with antique furniture and the like.

After the folklore museum/coffee shop, we met up at the Center for Hellenic Studies, a Harvard University extension here in Nafplio. We received a tour of the building and we learned what resources would be available to us this week. We are very grateful for the CHS, as they have an awesome digital library and amazing WiFi speed for Greece. CHS will certainly make writing our papers easier.

After our tour, we broke for lunch, and then went back to the CHS to get cracking on our papers. They’re due a week from tomorrow.

Don’t take your internet speed for granted,

The Crü

Day 57: Thursday, June 1

Oh yeah, the Lion Gate!

Sites Visited: Mycenae

Leaders: Grace and Bodek

Greetings friends, families, and the 15 people in Bulgaria who follow our blog,

bulgaria views

Today we got a few extra hours of sleep, and did not head to our first site until noon. This meant that most of us did not set alarms, and we woke up at times ranging from early in the morning to well after 11:30 AM. This also meant that a lot of us did not wake up in time for breakfast, so we frantically headed to peripteros to get snacks. For those of you who don’t know, peripteros are kiosks on every street corner that sell basically everything imaginable. They have been lifesavers these past 10 weeks whenever we needed water or quick empty calories.

After the more hectic than necessary morning, we headed for Mycenae. Upon arriving and fighting with the wind to hold on to our tickets, we saw the lion gate. The gate has post and lintel construction, with a relieving triangle on top, on which lions are carved in relief. We also saw grave circle B, which is actually older than grave circle A. It’s almost as if archaeologists named the grave circles specifically to confuse Dartmouth students. Then, we walked around the palace remains, and channeled our inner Indiana Jones by going into a cistern. Unfortunately a rope prevented us from going more than about a dozen meters. Did I just say meters? Boy we’ve been in Greece for a while.

Next was the museum, where we found an E-postcard generator. If you are the recipient of an email with the subject “A message from a friend via the Ephorate of Antiquities of Argolis!” it’s not a scam. You can safely click on the attachments. Also check your spam folders. You never know if you got an E-postcard that looks like it is malware. On a more serious note we saw a lot of figurines and pots in the museum, as well as model snakes.

Speaking of snakes, we saw a live one at the Treasury of Atreus, our final stop for the day. It didn’t bother us and we didn’t bother it. The treasury itself is a large tholos tomb with really good acoustics. The lintel block over the doorway weighs 120 tons, and we’re not really sure how it got there, but it’s nothing a little experimental archaeology can’t figure out. All in all it was a pretty good day.

The Greece FSP,
Is winding down so slowly,
That was a haiku

MHB and GCC

IMG_2805

Day 56: Wednesday, May 31

Sites Visited: Argive Heraion, Epidauros

Leaders: Ben and Vic

Howdy-ho!

Today was a pretty excellent day, if a bit too heavy on the bus. We started out with a trip to the Argive Heraion, and suddenly discovered that Greece is really darn HOT in the summer.

After spending a brief time at the summit, the rest of our time overlooking the Argive Plain (some real creative names near Argos) was spent dodging from shady spot to shady spot. We then had another brief bus ride before we were at Epidauros, a massive site with a cool healing sanctuary as well as a games site.Somehow the less Elite games only gave money, because elites were too good for anything for olive oil and money was for οί πολλοί. There might even have been a maze below one of the buildings (and it might have held sneks)! Then we drove the rest of the way to Nauplio and did some exploring before tucking in for the night.

May your enemies always have one sock without a match.
Ben and Vic

Day 55: Tuesday, May 30

Sites visited: Numismatic Museum, Acropolis, Wiener Lab at ASCSA

Leaders: Shania and Herr Frankel

Blog Post:

To Whom It May Concern:
We write to you today to tell you about our experience on May 30th. Our day commenced with a visit to the numismatic museum of the Greek state. We met a very learned man named Panagiotis, who makes numismatics his area of study. The museum was the old house of the well-known Heinrich Schliemann, a man who did not make numismatics his study. After the numismatic museum of the Greek state we made the walk to the Acropolis, where we were granted permission to enter into the interior of the building on that outcrop. Then we went to the Wiener Laboratory, where another man by the name of Michailidis (also not a numismatist), gave us another tour. We saw some stratigraphy, some archeobotany, and some anthrakology (not numismatics, but charcoal studies). Then the day ended and reparations were made to the hotel. Thank you for giving this missive your attention, and please take it under consideration.

Warmest regards,

Shania Kee and Max Frankel

Day 54: Sunday, May 28

Aphaia
aegina_ped_recon

Sites Visited: Temple of Aphaia and Kolona, Aegina

Leaders: Nat and Tim

Hi guys!

We took the Flying Dolphin from Piraeus to Aegina this morning and paid a visit to the Temple of Aphaia, an early classical structure that has been the subject of significant debate over its sculptural program – its west pediment housed sculpture in the earlier Archaizing style while its east was filled with sculpture done in the later Severe style. The temple was dedicated to the goddess Aphaia, who was granted divinity by Artemis and is often syncretized with the mountain goddess Britomartis and with Artemis herself. We also took the opportunity to pose as the sculptures in one of the pediments before stopping into the nearby museum.

Our other stop for the day was at Kolonna, a settlement that is home to a Temple of Apollo of which a singular column still stands – the namesake of the site. Corridor houses here from the Early Bronze Age suggest the development of complex administration during this period, and ceramics made here are easily identifiable by the biatite (gold micah) present in their clay. After finishing up with our academics for the day, we did our best to stay out of the overcast weather and spent a few hours exploring the town before riding the Flying Dolphin back home.

Peace and love,

Nat and Tim