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Atsipades (also Atsipadhes, Atsipadhes Korakias which refers specifically to the peak) is a modern village and an archaeological site of a Minoan peak sanctuary in western Crete.


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Geography

Atsipades is about 20km south of the modern town of Rethymnon. Korakias peak is a part of Mount Kouroupas, above the modern village of Atsipades.

Archaeology

Atsipades was identified as a peak sanctuary in 1986. The site was excavated in 1989 by the Atsipadhes Korakias Peak Sanctuary Project, directed by Alan Peatfield, then Curator of the British School at Athens branch at Knossos, now at University College Dublin Ireland.

Atsipades was in use from Early Minoan III to Middle Minoan II.

Finds included ceramic spindle whorls for weaving, numerous clay human and animal figurines, ceramic lamps and ceramic altars (a group of finds originally suggested to depict circumcised human phalloi has since been recognised to represent sleeved human arms).

The votive animal figurines are mostly of cattle. Settlements found by an archaeological field survey in the nearby Ayios Vasilios Valley suggest that this peak sanctuary served a rural community of farmsteads and hamlets.

References

Jones, Donald W. (1999). Peak Sanctuaries and Sacred Caves in Minoan Crete: Comparison of Artifacts. Jonsered: P. Aströms. ISBN 91-7081-153-9.
Peatfield, Alan (1994). "The Atsipadhes Korakias Peak Sanctuary Project". Retrieved 12 April 2008.

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