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It was a thrill to see so many friends and colleagues back on Crete for the first public event at the Study Center since 2019-a workshop on Protopalatial pottery organized by Ilaria Caloi, Giorgos Doudalis and Tom Brogan.

The recent course of the pandemic has made it a fool’s game to plan major events this summer, and it was only late May when we received confirmation that the Customs Building in Pacheia Ammos could serve as the venue for the conference. As a result our celebrations this summer will take the form of smaller occasions highlighting the diversity and achievements of our members, projects, and the wider community of Aegean Prehistorians working on Crete.

Our staff worked tirelessly in recent months to get everything ready. I would like to specially thank Matina Papadaki, who stopped sorting residues on Wednesday to prepare a Cretan feast for the keynote lecture by Jan Driessen, Director of the Sissi Excavation Project, and our guests which was held at the Study Center on Friday night. While himself not a pottery person, Jan is a leading expert in almost everything else to do with the Cretan Bronze Age. His lecture, “Between Regionalism and Standardization. A Non-Ceramic View of the Protopalatial Period on Crete,” drew attention to the growth of urban centers in Middle Minoan I-II and the repercussions of this dynamic on rural populations involved with agriculture and pastoralism in different parts of Crete. We could not have asked for a better start to the workshop.

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