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Abstract


ANALYSIS OF CYPRUS ARCHEOLOGICAL CYLINDER SEAL VISUALS

People have tried to determine their "personality" and "property" rights by using special signs and symbols since ancient times. These symbols are the signs that people who lived together and formed a community in the conditions of that day that they agreed on. One of the human-made tools, on which these special personality and property markers appear are cylinder seals. Different expressions were made besides determining personality and property by means of text and images engraved on cylinder seals. In this research, cylinder seals, which are archaeological artifacts in the island of Cyprus, exhibited in museums and may be subject to the relevant literature were examined. The seals that make up the sample consist of cylinder seals exhibited in Cyprus archaeological museums, in the British Museum, Metropolitan Museum and the Cyprus artifacts sections of the John Hopkins Museum. The cylinder seals used by the communities and governments that have dominated Cyprus in the historical process have been investigated as visual imagery. Therefore, images on cylinder seals produced in Cyprus or neighbouring cultures between 2000 BC and 600 BC were investigated. In this research, the engravings on seals that were produced in neighbouring cultures and brought to Cyprus as a gift or were imported also examined. All figures made on the seals were produced in neighbouring cultures and brought to the island with different methods were also included in the study. In this context, the features of the motif, figure, inscription, decoration and patterns used on 191 cylinder seals obtained during the research process were investigated. As a result of the examination, figures which engraved on the seals was coded in accordance with their themes, all the images engraved on the seals were divided into categories. Six main categories were determined as a result of categorical division. Twenty-seven themes belonging to the identified main six categories were also determined. Among the scrapings on the cylinder seals that constitute the sample of the research; visuals that determine the variety of food production, agriculture, mining, blessing and sacrifice scenes, and demonstrating the scenes of a birthday of the seal owner were encountered. From the pictures drawn on the cave walls, it is known that such special signs or images serving different purposes were used. In this context, the fact that only pictorial images were engraved on some of the cylinder seals reveals the view that they existed before the writing and that the tradition of that period continued on the seal engraving after the writing was found.



Keywords
Archaeological seals, Cypriot culture, Ancient Cyprus, Cylinder seals, seal figures



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