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Abstract

The Ionian Migration – an ancient narrative that told of a large-scale, en masse movement of Ionian Greeks from mainland Greece to the western coast of Anatolia – has traditionally been used to explain how Ionia was a region populated by Anatolian Ionians, who identified as and spoke Greek by the sixth and fifth centuries BCE. In recent years, however, the historicity of this migration narrative has been questioned: in particular, there are discrepancies and disagreements in the basic overall plot and actors, a dearth of supportive archaeological evidence, and a constellation of foundation stories that the Anatolian Ionians told about themselves, of which the Ionian Migration narrative was but one. This dissertation, therefore, reassesses the evidence for the formation of an Anatolian Ionian regional identity in the seventh and sixth centuries BCE and considers new avenues and impetuses for its formation and articulation, which we argue is tied to the intersection of several facets: commerce and trade, cross-cultural encounters as linked through itineracy, the built sanctuary environment and its cultic community, votive dedications, and shared festivals and their identity narratives. Chapter One sets out the methodological approaches of this dissertation and argues that the sanctuary environment and its concomitant cultic community was an important medium for the nurturing and expression of an Anatolian Ionian identity. It also argues that the use of material culture in ritual actions is a potent source of evidence for the tracing of this identity. Chapter Two rethinks the “Ionian Migration” not as the wholesale movement of people, but as the movement of a name. This chapter argues that the “Ionian” name initially had economic overtones that facilitated trade and exchange between Aegean and Levantine traders – thereby acting as a moniker of sorts – that allowed it to be carried on the sea routes by these individuals in the first half of the first millennium BCE. Chapter Three argues that the sanctuaries of Ionia were deeply connected to the maritime networks of the Archaic Aegean – both functioning as nodes in and being utilized by actors within these networks. A study of the votive material from these sanctuaries reveals the presence of these actors – traders, mercenaries, xenoi, and pirates – and suggests that the sanctuaries benefitted economically from these maritime networks. Chapter Four reexamines the emergence of large stone temples – with their proliferation of peristyles of Ionian columns – in Ionia during the seventh and sixth centuries BCE and argues that this phenomenon can be connected in part to these sanctuaries’ maritime and economic networks, acting as a sort of aesthetic branding, and speaks to Ionia’s emerging regional identity. Chapter Five examines select votive dedicatory practices in Ionia – the large-scale stone kouroi and korai and the Artemision’s electrum coinage – that might speak to the region’s burgeoning identity and its growing economic interdependence and cooperation. Additionally, for Chapters Three, Four, and Five, the emporion of Naucratis is used to highlight the potency of commerce, cross-cultural environments, and sanctuaries for the emergence and articulation of identities. Finally, Chapter Six moves from the material culture of Ionia to Ionian festivals – the Panionia, the Delia, the Apaturia, and the Anthesteria – to examine how the performative religious experience also celebrated and reified this new identity. Overall, this dissertation argues that the negotiation and expression of an Anatolian Ionian identity in the Archaic period should be sought not in the large-scale movement of a specific “Ionian” people, but at the dynamic intersection of small-scale and individual itineracies, trade and commerce, sanctuaries and beliefs, and multi-cultural interaction in Ionia in the Archaic period.

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