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THE EXHIBIT

Prinias, cemetery. 650 BC

This funerary stele of the Archaic period from the cemetery of Prinias was found, together with many others, reused as building material set into the walls of a four-sided funerary building of much later date. Thisreuseofobjects and architectural members was a common practice in the past. In their original form, these stelae were grave markers. On this stele is engraved a female figure, most probably the dead woman whose grave it adorned.She is wearing a long himation and is holding a spindle and distaff, implements for spinning yarn,in her left hand.Traces of red paint and some black dots are preserved on the bottom of her garmentand in the background. Her facial features are rendered in the Daedalic style of the period, with strongly marked, almond-shaped eyes. Onherleftare traces of an inscription, now unreadable, probably recording her name. The scene celebrates the woman’s skill in the art of weaving, a particularly important occupation in the management of the domestic economy during this period. The stele presents an idealised image of the woman, as the creator and pillar of family life.
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