Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
The Hellenistic Period was a time of great cultural change for the Middle East. New peoples and ideas were introduced into the region, interacting with local cultures. In the process, new ideas and traditions were produced and defined. Such phenomena were weil represented in the temples which were built in the Middle East after the death of Alexander the Great. These structures, in their construction and use, benefitted from the influences of a variety of sources with the result of producing forms of structure and cult which had previously not been seen.
This thesis examines the religious structures at three sites, spaced widely across the Middle East: Ai Khanum in modern day Afghanistan, the island of Failaka off the coast of Kuwait, and Dura-Europos in Syria. Each of these three sites was a new foundation by the incoming Greeks, and each possessedmultiple religious structues which have been relatively weil documented archaeologically. For each temple in this study, the structure and, where possible, the the evidence for cult is described and examined in order to identify the cultural heritages of the various elements and how the elements work together. Sorne of the possible cultural heritages of the temples to be examined may include the Mesopotamian tradition with its courtyards and massive mudbrick constructions or the Greek tradition with its Doric or Ionie orders. This thesis also analyses the resulting information so that any patterns and processes, which emerge from this complex picture, might then be identified and explained.
Lesperance, Paul, "Hellenistic Period Temples in the Middle East: Case Studies of Cross-Cultural Influences Upon religious Structures" (2002). Open Access Dissertations and Theses. Paper 7136.
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