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by Martha Risser

A lovely rolled-rim plate was found yesterday in the Garea (i.e., eastern part of our excavations, where Professor Gary Gilbert works). Made in Athens, Greece, in the early Hellenistic period and exported to Akko, this plate is covered with a shiny black glaze. The glaze is partly mottled to red on the underside, an effect that would be seen if the plate was leaned against a wall when not in use. At the center of the floor is a stamped “palmette cross” within a circle of chattering or rouletting. Except for a few chips that are missing from the rim, the plate is in excellent condition.

With a diameter of only 12.5 cm – about 7 inches – this plate was probably best suited for μεζέδες (snacks). We might imagine cosmopolitan Phoenicians reclining on cushioned couches, enjoying the soft sea breezes as they nibbled on olives, pickled radishes, or little honey-drenched cakes.

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Martha Risser
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μεζέδες