Home > Pyla-Koutsopetria Archaeological Project > Susan’s Departure and Sarah’s Arrival

Susan’s Departure and Sarah’s Arrival

Susan Caraher, our registrar of finds and my wife, bid tearful farewell to the island this morning.  She provided a sense of order in the museum and, at least for me, a refuge from the hectic archaeological world.  I will miss her in Cyprus and will be counting the days until I see her again in Grand Forks.

After a hectic week of field and museum work, David and Scott toured the students around Nicosia, taking them to the Cyprus Museum which houses many important artifacts from all period of antiquity.  They also checked out some of the local sites — including the wall that continues to divide the city.  It is great experience for students to visit major collections of artifacts with the senior staff of the project.  It gives them a chance to connect the fragments that we collect in the field and study in the Larnaka museum to completed vessels.

I stayed back in Larnaka and helped get Sarah Lepinski.  She has arrived with her entourage (that is her twins and baby sitter) to study wall paintings and molded gypsum (a soft rock that forms the basis for a rugged plaster) architectural decoration.  She will spend the next few weeks working with this material in the museum and traveling to sites throughout the island where similar material was excavated.  Her work will form an important chapter in our final publication.

As David Pettegrew has mentioned, our great excitement for this past week was our preliminary analysis of our geophysical work on Vigla.  As we noted over a week ago, we knew that it had revealed monumental architecture (or “something big”).  Further study of the image now suggests that this architecture might well be a Late Roman basilica church.  This would fit well with our discovery of Late Roman fortification walls on this prominent coastal ridge.  The only real problem is that we have not found any significant amount of Late Roman pottery on the ridge.  While there are some other examples for this, it is nevertheless disconcerting.

The final news of the weekend (at least so far) is that my parents have come to visit.  They have a lively interest in the archaeology and history of the Mediterranean and look forward to watching the team work over the next few days and seeing some of the sites on the island.

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