HART Semineri: “Phrygians at the Black Sea? Exploring Ritual Landscapes in Northern Anatolia”, Julia Koch, 17:30 27 Mart 2024 (EN)

An evening lecture will be given by Dr. Julia Koch (Institute of Classical Studies, University of Giessen)

“Phrygians at the Black Sea? Exploring Ritual Landscapes in Northern Anatolia”
On Wednesday 27th March 2024 at 17:30 in H-232 (Faculty of Humanities and Letters)

GE points will be given.

The Kingdom of Phrygia is traditionally located in the western Anatolian Plateau centering on the capital at Gordion on the Upper Sangarios River. Recent scholarship, however, has reconstructed the territorial expansion of the Phrygian Kingdom on a large scale both to the east and to the northeast of Gordion for political control over the region of the Halys River bend during the later 8th/7th century B.C. The Devrez Valley north of Çankırı at the foot of the Ilgaz Mountains is seen to have marked the northern limits of the Phrygian state. In this lecture we cross the Ilgaz Mountains towards the southern Black Sea to survey the religious landscape inventories of Iron Age northern Anatolia influenced by Phrygian culture: rock-cut facades and idols, stepped altars carved from the living rock, cult statues and niches, and so-called house shrines sculptured in miniature. At the sanctuary of Phrygian Zeus at Tios two sherds incised with Paleo-Phrygian graffiti were found next to East Greek and Attic pottery near an Archaic temple, while in Tios’ hinterland Phrygian grave goods were deposited in a tumulus. Votive offerings of Attic drinking vessels dedicated to Kybebos and terracotta figurines of the goddess ritually deposited in a sacrificial pit at the Greek seaport of Amisos shed further light on the significance of sanctuaries as stage for the maintenance of local cult tradition and intercultural exchange. By presenting new and less recent finds of sacr(aliz)ed places this talk offers fresh insights into Iron Age northern Anatolia abundant with astonishing ritual landscapes and it is hoped to encourage further discussion on colonial encounters of diverse migrant communities – both Greek and Phrygian – settling along the southern Black Sea coast.

Julia M. Koch studied Classical and Proto- and Prehistoric Archaeology at the Universities of Heidelberg, Munich, and Athens before she became lecturer at the Universities of Bamberg and Giessen. She acted as director of the Pompeiopolis field school in Türkiye (2014-2016) and conducted field schools at the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of the Raetian and the Upper German Limes as well as surveyed archaeological sites in the Caucasus Mountains, Azerbaijan, Tajikistan, Peru, and Türkiye through geophysical prospection.
In 2018 she was awarded the dissertation prize of the Faculty for the Study of Culture at LMU Munich for her Ph.D. Dissertation on Funerary Monuments from the City of Pompeiopolis in Paphlagonia – Tradition and Local Identity in Sepulchral Art of Roman Northern Anatolia. In 2022/23 she was a visiting research fellow at the University of Edinburgh and King’s College in London and, most recently, a guest lecturer at Boğaziçi University in Istanbul. Currently, she is a member of the Tios Excavation on the Black Sea coast and the 7th Research Network on Socio-Ecological Approaches to the History and Archaeology of Anatolia organized by the Istanbul Department of the German Archaeological Institute, Koç University’s Research Center for Anatolian Civilizations, and Princeton University’s Climate Change and History Research Initiative.