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Rethinking Iberian 'Warrior' stelae: a multidisciplinary investigation of Mirasiviene and its connection to Setefilla (Lora del Río, Seville, Spain)

Rethinking Iberian 'Warrior' stelae: a multidisciplinary investigation of Mirasiviene and its connection to Setefilla (Lora del Río, Seville, Spain)
Rethinking Iberian 'Warrior' stelae: a multidisciplinary investigation of Mirasiviene and its connection to Setefilla (Lora del Río, Seville, Spain)
Iberian ‘warrior’ stelae have captured the imagination of researchers and the public for more than a century. Traditionally, stelae were considered ‘de-contextualised’ monuments, and research typically focused on the study of their iconography, paying little or no attention to their immediate contexts. As a result, despite the large number of these stelae known to date (c. 140) and the ample body of literature that has dealt with them, fundamental questions remain unanswered. This paper aims to demonstrate the potential of a multidisciplinary and contextual approach to push forward the research agenda on these monuments through a case study. Firstly, we introduce the Mirasiviene stela and the methods deployed for its investigation, which include a variety of digital imaging techniques, petrography, pXRF, intensive survey and multi-scalar spatial analysis. Secondly, we discuss the results in relation to three main topics: stela biography, social practices and landscape context. Comparisons to
the well-known nearby Bronze Age and Iron Age site of Setefilla are made throughout the discussion. Ultimately, this paper makes a case for the stelae of Mirasiviene and Setefilla being polyvalent monuments made by local artisans, that served both as a landmarks and memorials in connection with dense late second and early first millennium BCE settlement patterns in the region. Probably linked to elites, ‘houses’ or kin groups of this time, stelae were set in symbolically-charged places, liminal spaces nearby water, burials and pathways, attracting a range of ritual activities throughout the centuries. The study of the newly discovered Mirasiviene stela shows that multidisciplinary, cutting-edge non-destructive archaeology can shed significant new light on these prehistoric monuments, thus providing a glimpse of what in our opinion is a paradigm shift in the research of similar monuments throughout Europe.
1866-9557
Diaz-Guardamino Uribe, Marta M
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Garcia Sanjuan, Leonardo
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Wheatley, David W.
58266ad0-4ea1-4b1b-a8c3-9fd902931828
Lozano Rodríguez, José Antonio
51b512e7-5624-4b9d-bfa5-6493281a6dde
Rogerio-Candelera, Miguel Ángel
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Krueger, Michal
5952f25d-8068-4de4-93fa-e7411805156a
Krueger, Marta
1a673c71-7438-430d-ad6d-a8fc037960c7
Hunt Ortiz, Mark
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Murillo Barroso, Mercedes
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Balsera-Nieto, Veronica
19536110-7793-4ec1-aea7-affd3446afc2
Diaz-Guardamino Uribe, Marta M
90b7539a-fe4b-446a-a6ff-4bd0a7b5cbf3
Garcia Sanjuan, Leonardo
0648ef8d-7514-448a-be81-b112fc67e2b7
Wheatley, David W.
58266ad0-4ea1-4b1b-a8c3-9fd902931828
Lozano Rodríguez, José Antonio
51b512e7-5624-4b9d-bfa5-6493281a6dde
Rogerio-Candelera, Miguel Ángel
b9d2d6ce-1972-41ff-9162-5bc2d5c0cc2d
Krueger, Michal
5952f25d-8068-4de4-93fa-e7411805156a
Krueger, Marta
1a673c71-7438-430d-ad6d-a8fc037960c7
Hunt Ortiz, Mark
a72b79da-0964-41a8-9566-b023a066fa0d
Murillo Barroso, Mercedes
3144924f-775e-448b-9408-505c657a98c8
Balsera-Nieto, Veronica
19536110-7793-4ec1-aea7-affd3446afc2

Diaz-Guardamino Uribe, Marta M, Garcia Sanjuan, Leonardo, Wheatley, David W., Lozano Rodríguez, José Antonio, Rogerio-Candelera, Miguel Ángel, Krueger, Michal, Krueger, Marta, Hunt Ortiz, Mark, Murillo Barroso, Mercedes and Balsera-Nieto, Veronica (2019) Rethinking Iberian 'Warrior' stelae: a multidisciplinary investigation of Mirasiviene and its connection to Setefilla (Lora del Río, Seville, Spain). Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences. (Submitted)

Record type: Article

Abstract

Iberian ‘warrior’ stelae have captured the imagination of researchers and the public for more than a century. Traditionally, stelae were considered ‘de-contextualised’ monuments, and research typically focused on the study of their iconography, paying little or no attention to their immediate contexts. As a result, despite the large number of these stelae known to date (c. 140) and the ample body of literature that has dealt with them, fundamental questions remain unanswered. This paper aims to demonstrate the potential of a multidisciplinary and contextual approach to push forward the research agenda on these monuments through a case study. Firstly, we introduce the Mirasiviene stela and the methods deployed for its investigation, which include a variety of digital imaging techniques, petrography, pXRF, intensive survey and multi-scalar spatial analysis. Secondly, we discuss the results in relation to three main topics: stela biography, social practices and landscape context. Comparisons to
the well-known nearby Bronze Age and Iron Age site of Setefilla are made throughout the discussion. Ultimately, this paper makes a case for the stelae of Mirasiviene and Setefilla being polyvalent monuments made by local artisans, that served both as a landmarks and memorials in connection with dense late second and early first millennium BCE settlement patterns in the region. Probably linked to elites, ‘houses’ or kin groups of this time, stelae were set in symbolically-charged places, liminal spaces nearby water, burials and pathways, attracting a range of ritual activities throughout the centuries. The study of the newly discovered Mirasiviene stela shows that multidisciplinary, cutting-edge non-destructive archaeology can shed significant new light on these prehistoric monuments, thus providing a glimpse of what in our opinion is a paradigm shift in the research of similar monuments throughout Europe.

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More information

Submitted date: 22 July 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 432900
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/432900
ISSN: 1866-9557
PURE UUID: 70c8db8b-ab75-460e-bd58-1705a30c7ff7

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Date deposited: 31 Jul 2019 16:30
Last modified: 31 Jul 2019 16:30

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Contributors

Author: Leonardo Garcia Sanjuan
Author: José Antonio Lozano Rodríguez
Author: Miguel Ángel Rogerio-Candelera
Author: Michal Krueger
Author: Marta Krueger
Author: Mark Hunt Ortiz
Author: Mercedes Murillo Barroso
Author: Veronica Balsera-Nieto

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