Institute for Mediterranean Studies


Innovative Geophysical Approaches for the Study of Early Agricultural Villages of Neolithic Thessaly

The specific project will carry out systematic and extensive geophysical surveys in a number of Neolithic magoules in Thessaly and in order to achieve this it will design and implement a specific geophysical strategy for the fast and high resolution assessment of the subsurface of them.

Around 6800 cal BC first agro-pastoral groups settled in Europe. Given that some of the earlier Neolithic groups of the Old World were settled in both coastal and mainland Thessaly, this region has been designated as a significant field for the understanding of the development of the gradual Neolithization of Europe. The regional geomorphology features a distinctive unit with clear boundaries and subsections making Thessaly suitable for the study of the settlement patterns of early agricultural societies during the Neolithic period.

The research project 'IGEAN - Innovative geophysical approaches for the study of early agricultural villages of Neolithic Thessaly' will conduct systematic and large-scale geophysical research at a large number of Neolithic tell sites (magoules) organized for the first time in Thessaly. The key aim of the project is to identify intra- and inter-site spatial patterns of contemporary Neolithic settlements in the coastal zone of Magnesia County through the comparative study of archaeological and geophysical data. Geophysical surveys will make use of innovative multi-component geophysical instrumentation (multi-sensor magnetic, multi-antenna GPR arrays, UAV-IR, chemical and magnetic analyses) needed for the widespread coverage of the sites and it will enable the study of a great number of Neolithic sites. Such a local scale holistic analysis enhances comparative discussions on the formation of social space at the coastal zone of Magnesia County to the hinterland of the Thessalian plain and beyond.

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