Animals and Plants in the Religions of the Ancient Mediterranean: Iberia and Greece

Eagle. Iberian kalathos. 2nd century BC

The goal of this project was to analyse different ways in which nature—animals and plants—were appropriated in the ancient Mediterranean based on the iconographic evidence, in the specific context of archaic and classical Greece (sixth-fourth centuries BC).

We focused on images to conduct an analysis of nature, understood as a cultural construct within a historical process and as a form of self-representation which, in archaic and classical Greece, accompanied and reflected the development of the polis. Selected iconographic resources, preferably contextualised, allowed us to gain a deeper understanding of how nature was regarded in ancient Greece.

The Greek and Iberian contexts present two different yet parallel processes of the perception of nature, but both are set against the general backdrop of the ancient Mediterranean. We were able to compare and contrast these two contexts by undertaking a joint and mutually enriching historical analysis of cultural diversity and interaction.

 

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