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Chapter Summary

The Cypriot Basileia remains a fundamental historico-archaeological problem. This political break, denitely, had 'irreversible consequences' for the study of the individual histories of the Iron Age polities. This chapter analyses politico-religious ideological processes and structures of symbolism rather than to fully comprehend the content of the cults. It discusses how one must be sceptical about the possibilities of fully reconstructing ancient religious systems and symbolism on the basis of material remains. However, the isolation of particular archaeological aspects for analysis - particularly iconographic elements of terracotta figurines and sculptures, but also archaeological context and architecture, in combination with textual and epigraphic evidence - can prove to be a useful way of penetrating the cognitive systems of both elites and non-elites in terms of agentive power and ideology. The Ptolemaic royal cult is directly related to royal portraiture and therefore it needs to be examined.

Keywords:archaeological; Cypriot Basileia; historical narratives; ptolemaic royal; sculptures



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