Ancient Mediterranean

Digital Project

Ship model

Cat. No.



LH IIIA-B (1420/10-1200-1190)


Tanagra, unknown


L: 6 cm; W: 2.5 cm; H (bow): 2.5 cm


Clay model, pale cream slip, dark brown to pale orange paint

Accession Number

Thebes Archaeological Museum


Basch 1987: 141, fig.293.2; Demakopoulou and Konsola 1981: 87, Case 1 bottom shelf; Wachsmann 1998: 149, fig. 7.41; Wedde 2000: 311, no. 318

Small crescentic hull with straight gunwales. The stempost ends in an outward facing bird head device. The inside has a painted keel line and three ribs/frames. On the exterior, there is a painted line running from the tip of the animal head along the gunwales to the tip of the stempost. On each side there are eight vertical lines. The fact that the number of stripes is not the same on the interior and the exterior of the model suggests that the latter cannot be read as ribs. The model is unpublished so that caution is warranted in making too much of the figurehead, given that it is completely different in appearance from the rest of the Aegean repertoire, which shows a hybrid creature characterized by a prominent recurving beak and a large eye

From a large chamber tomb cemetery with over a hundred burials spanning from LH IIIA1 to early LH IIIC.

Basch, L. 1987. Le musée imaginaire de la marine antique. Athens: Institut Hellénique pour la preservation de la tradition nautique.

Demakopoulou, K. and D. Konsola. 1981. Archaeological Museum of Thebes. Guide. Athens: General Direction of Antiquities and Restoration.

Wachsmann, S. 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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