Burying between “Lamos” and “Kalykadnos”: The Many Faces of the Late Antique Funerary Landscapes of Eastern Rough Cilicia, in Ardeleanu, Stefan und Cubas Díaz, Jon C. (Hrsg.): Funerary Landscapes of the Late Antique “oecumene”: Contextualizing Epigraphic and Archeological Evidence of Mortuary Practices. Proceedings of an International Conference in Heidelberg, May 30–June 1, 2019, Heidelberg: Heidelberg University Publishing, 2023 (Kulturelles Erbe: Materialität – Text – Edition (KEMTE), Band 3), S. 249–281. https://doi.org/10.17885/heiup.1176.c16237

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ISBN 978-3-96822-211-0 (PDF)
ISBN 978-3-96822-210-3 (Hardcover)




Jon C. Cubas Díaz

Burying between “Lamos” and “Kalykadnos”: The Many Faces of the Late Antique Funerary Landscapes of Eastern Rough Cilicia

Abstract This paper deals with the funerary culture of Rough Cilicia in Late Antiq­uity. The settlements discussed offer an insight into the multifaceted funerary land­scapes of Late Antique Rough Cilicia, which present a strongly nuanced diversity. Furthermore, these settlements clearly show the potential of combining archaeo­logical and epigraphic approaches when analysing evidence of mortuary practices.

The Jewish and Christian communities of Korykos obviously shared similar ideas regarding the conception, use and function of funerary monuments. The epi­taphs produced for Christian and Jewish citizens were similar in format, structure, content and design; so were the funerary monuments and their spatial setting. Also, iconographic representations of religious motifs were an integral part of funerary monuments of Christians and Jews alike.

In many necropoleis, proximity to the street remained a decisive factor in the spatial organization and design of funerary spaces. Under the influence of Christi­anity, church buildings became another central factor in the spatial layout of funer­ary monuments. This supra-regional phenomenon is clearly noticeable in Rough Cilicia: burial zones in Late Antiquity were often accentuated by church buildings, exercising great power in attracting burials. At the same time, commemorative structures change through spatial relocation of practices to church buildings and the new role of the entire community as the primary target group.

Contemporaneously, alternative concepts for funerary spaces, following stan­dards of their own, were developed and practiced in other settlements in the re­gion, like Karakabaklı. The inhabitants of this affluent, but also quite modestly sized community built their funerary monuments in the immediate vicinity of their houses, far away from the main road. A comparison with contemporary find­ings from the nearby settlement of Işıkkale is particularly noteworthy in this con­text, since radically different concepts were pursued there in more than one in­stance.

Keywords burials, mortuary practices, epitaphs, epigraphy, funerary monuments