Ancient Mediterranean

Digital Project

Single-levelled galley

Cat. No.





Phaistos (palace)


L: 7.5 cm; H: 7.3


Lip fragment of a cup. Fine ware, pink clay, lustrous cream slip (inside/outside), opaque brown-pink paint

Accession Number

Phaistos Stratigraphical Museum F1027


Laviosa 1969-1970: 9-10, 13-15, fig. 1b; Wachsmann 1981: 206; 1998: 141, fig. 7.27; Wedde 2000: 320, no. 609

Flat hull in right profile depicted by a single thick horizontal line, outward-curving stempost and raking sternpost. Horizontal spur created by the line of the hull continuing past the junction with the stem. The vessel's extremities are missing. A helmsman facing aft holding a quarter rudder which extends diagonally abaft the sternpost. Crewman at the bow. Six steering oars below the hull. Mast amidships with four lines extending. The two lower ones extending to the base are probably stays, while the upper two are likely a yard with down curving ends. Possible deadeye to the left of the mast.

According to Wachsmann, the small pointed projection at the junction of the sternpost and the hull resembles the miniature stern spur visible on two of the sea people's ships. Wedde interprets this as simply the helmsman's foot extending below the keel-line.

Laviosa, C. 1969-70. “La marina micenea,” Annuario 47-48: 7-40.

Wachsmann, S. 1981. “The Ships of the Sea People,” IJNA 10: 187-220.

―――. 1998. Seagoing Ships & Seamanship in the Bronze Age Levant. College Station, TX: Texas A&M University Press.

Wedde, M. 2000. Towards a Hermeneutics of Aegean Bronze Age Ship Imagery. Peleus Studien zur Archäologie und Geschichte Griechenlands und Zyperns, vol. 6. Bibliopolis: Mannheim and Möhnsee.

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