By examining the role of the Phoenician tradesmen and craftsmen of the 9 -7th century BC in Creta based on the archaeological evidence known from the Idaean Cave, Kommos and Knossos, the present study emphasises the importance of the Phoenician ivory works in the Cretan art. The representation of a Phoenician style ivory panel found in the Idaean Cave, a tree of life beside two griffins, constitutes the subject of the following interpretation. The figural composition allows for the identification of the local adaptations as a variation of a theme imported from the eastern world. In addition, it enables us to broaden our knowledge about the Cretan craftsmen's choice of subject and the copy of model. The main achievement of the study is the parallel interpretation of the Cretan sources and those of the Near-Eastern hinterland (primarily the Biblical and Assyrian records and the ivories of Nimrud); that allows for the estimation of the Phoenician's cultural influence to Creta.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.