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H 245 x W 175 mm

226 pages

35 figures, 2 tables, 4 maps (colour throughout)

Published Mar 2021

Archaeopress Archaeology


Paperback: 9781789699159

Digital: 9781789699166

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Adriatic sea; Iron Age; Maritime; Underwater archaeology; Liburnians; Illyrian Lembs

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Liburnians and Illyrian Lembs: Iron Age Ships of the Eastern Adriatic

By Luka Boršić, Danijel Džino, Irena Radić Rossi

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This book explores the origins of two types of ancient ship connected with the protohistoric eastern Adriatic area: the ‘Liburnian’ and the southern Adriatic ‘lemb’. An extensive overview of written, iconographic and archaeological evidence questions the existing scholarly assumption that the liburna and lemb were closely related.



Preface ;

1. Introduction ;
Research problems and previous scholarship ;
Overview of the book ;
Terminology ;

2. Geographical context ;

3. Eastern Adriatic populations in the 1st millennium BC ;
The Liburni ;
Other Iron Age Eastern Adriatic indigenous seafaring groups ;
Greek colonising activities in the eastern Adriatic ;
Piracy in the eastern Adriatic? ;
Conclusion ;

4. Archaeological and iconographic evidence in protohistoric eastern Adriatic ;
Underwater finds ;
Iconography ;
Protohistoric archaeological and iconographical sources for eastern Adriatic ships ;

5. Written Sources on Lembs And Liburnians from the 4th c. BC to Late Antiquity ;
Introduction ;
Lemb ;
Liburnian ;

6. Discussion ;
Lemb ;
Liburnian ;
Etymology ;
Overview of usage of the terms lemb and liburnian in ancient sources from the 4th century BC until Late Antiquity ;
Lemb and liburnian: the same ship? ;
Conclusion ;

Bibliography ;
Ancient authors not listed in Chapter 5 ;
Modern sources

About the Author

Luka Boršić is currently Director, and Senior Research Fellow of the Institute of Philosophy in Zagreb. In 2019 he was a Fulbright Scholar at Columbia University in New York, during which period he completed his contribution to this book. ;

Danijel Džino is Senior Lecturer in the Department of History and Archaeology at Macquarie University, Sydney. ;

Irena Radić Rossi is currently employed as Associate Professor a the University of Zadar. She is an associated researcher of the Centre Camille Jullian (Aix-Marseille Universite, CNRS), an adjunct professor at the Nautical Archaeology Program of the Texas A&M University, and an affiliated scholar of the Institute of Nautical Archaeology.


‘Insgesamt betrachtet handelt es sich bei der vorliegenden Studie um ein Buch, das die Forschung definitiv ein gutes Stück weiterbringt, da sich die Autor*innen nicht auf vermeintliche Gewissheiten der älteren Forschung verlassen, sondern in Form einer systematischen Auswertung der vorhandenen Zeugnisse, die in dieser Form völlig neu ist, durchaus spannende Ergebnisse liefern. Somit ist nun eine sehr schöne Grundlage geschaffen, auf der die zukünftige Forschung aufbauen kann, um nach Antworten auf die noch verbliebenen Fragen zu den Themenfelder Lembos und Liburne zu suchen.’ – Michael Kleu (2022): Bryn Mawr Classical Review