On 13 September 2022, a scientific symposium was held at the Polish Academy of Sciences Scientific Center in Paris, co-organised by the Polish Academy of Sciences Scientific Center in Paris and the Faculty of Archaeology of the University of Warsaw, in partnership with the University of Avignon HiSoMA laboratory (UMR 5189). The main purpose of the meeting was to present the results of the French-Polish archaeological excavations conducted at Nea Paphos in Cyprus during the years 2018-2022 in the framework of the National Science Centre grant Harmonia 8 (UMO-2016/22/M/HS3/00351). The area of the joint research has been a sanctuary of the late Hellenistic (150-30 BC) and early Roman (1st-2nd century AD) periods at Fabrika hill in the north-eastern part of the ancient town. This sacred area consisted of several elements, situated both on the top of the hill and underground; due to the lack of written documents, the proper understanding of their function requires placing them in a wider context of the sanctuaries in the Eastern Mediterranean, considering not only the worship places of Cyprus, but also those of the Levant. On-going archaeological, historical and anthropological studies of sanctuary sites in those lands, with the religious activity seen as a social phenomenon, put forward research questions regarding the development of religious practices in indigenous cults under the impact of significant social and political changes that took place between the end of the Hellenistic period and early Roman period. The symposium presentations considered the impact of these changes, connected with the shift of political power in the Near East from the Ptolemies and Seleucids to the Romans, on the architectural as well as ritual expression of local cults. Specifically, except for the sacred areas in Paphos (C. Balandier, J. Młynarczyk, M. Rekowska, A. Kubicka) and Yeroskipou (E. Raptou), the papers presented during the symposium regarded also such areas of the eastern Greco-Roman culture as Transjordan (M. Burdajewicz), Nabataea (L. Tholbecq) and Egypt (A. Łajtar). The scientific discussion on the achievements of French-Polish cooperation in the archaeology of the Eastern Mediterranean enabled not only an invaluable exchange of knowledge, but also the establishment of new contacts between specialists in archaeology, history and anthropology from different countries.

Date of the event: 13 September 2022

Place of the event: Polish Academy of Sciences Scientific Center in Paris (74, rue Lauriston)


Organising Committee:

Prof. Jolanta Młynarczyk (University of Warsaw)

Prof. Claire Balandier (Avignon Université)

Diana Kogaczewska (Polish Academy of Sciences Scientific Center in Paris)