People of Ancient Daunia: Voicing the Statue-Stelae


Series: Monographs 85
ISBN: 978-1-950446-46-9
Publication Date: Apr 2024

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Camilla Norman

The statue-stelae of Early Iron Age Daunia (north Apulia, Italy) are a group of stone slabs, each incised to represent the garb and accoutrements of a person. Many have additional figurative images drawn on their robes showing ritual practices, everyday activities, and scenes of local legend. Much that is attested upon the stelae is today otherwise intangible, including not only perishable items (leather, textiles, skin) but the articulation of local customs and narratives. 

The people of Daunia stood—metaphorically and literally—between the Etruscans, Samnites, Illyrians, and Greek colonists of Magna Grecia, but are not as well understood as those peoples. Beyond the funerary record, the material culture of Daunians is relatively poorly known. The stelae, however, provide a rich source of self-representation, offering an unparalleled window into the lives of a protohistoric people. 

This book offers an in-depth analysis of the monuments while fixing them in the broader framework of reference for pre-Roman Italy and the Adriatic. Grounded in the scholarship of postcolonial and gender archaeology, it pays full respect to the agency of indigenous societies and the important role of women. This is the first time a holistic study of the stelae has been undertaken, and the first presentation of the material in English.  


Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Voicing the Daunian Stelae 

Chapter 2. Iron Age Daunia: A Social and Archaeological Context  

Chapter 3. History of Scholarship  

Chapter 4. Precursors and Parallels: Origins, Function, and Meaning  

Chapter 5. Connecting with Disembodied Heads 

Chapter 6. Anthropomorphic Imagery: Corporeal Gender Coding in Ancient Daunia 

Chapter 7. Anthropomorphic Imagery: The Robes 

Chapter 8. Anthropomorphic Imagery: Female Paraphernalia 

Chapter 9. Anthropomorphic Imagery: Male Paraphernalia  

Chapter 10. Figurative Imagery: A Vision of Daunian Practices and Stories 

Chapter 11. People of Ancient Daunia  

Appendix 1: Daunian Stelae with Published Findspots  

Appendix 2: Additional Daunian Stelae  

Appendix 3: Concordance