Theodora Moutsiou

Theodora Moutsiou
University of Cyprus · Department of History and Archaeology

PhD

About

19
Publications
3,306
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113
Citations
Introduction
I am currently the Principal Investigator of the research project "Water Routes in Human Island Dispersals: Modeling the Pleistocene Exploitation of Cyprus (PLEICY)" funded by the Research Promotion Foundation of the Republic of Cyprus. The project combines geospatial analysis with fieldwork and archival research to investigate the enigmatic absence of Pleistocene archaeological sites on the island of Cyprus, Eastern Mediterranean.
Additional affiliations
September 2015 - present
University of Cyprus
Position
  • PostDoc Position
February 2013 - March 2015
Natural History Museum, London
Position
  • Conservation Technician
Education
October 2005 - June 2011
Royal Holloway, University of London
Field of study
  • Palaeolithic Archaeology
September 2003 - February 2005
University of Southampton
Field of study
  • Archaeology of Human Origins
September 1998 - March 2003
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
Field of study
  • Archaeology

Publications

Publications (19)
Article
Full-text available
Picrolite artefacts comprise some of the most distinctive material remains in the prehistory of the island of Cyprus, in the Eastern Mediterranean. Picrolite exploitation dates from at least 12,000 years ago for the manufacture of personal ornaments and items with a symbolic function. It is commonly assumed that picrolite nodules were collected in...
Article
Full-text available
Predictive models have become an integral part of archaeological research, particularly in the discovery of new archaeological sites. In this paper, we apply predictive modeling to map high potential Pleistocene archaeological locales on the island of Cyprus in the Eastern Mediterranean. The model delineates landscape characteristics that denote ar...
Article
Island colonisation and adaptive responses of humans to newly colonised environments during the Pleistocene is hotly debated in archaeological discourse globally. Investigating these occurrences enables us to better understand the human condition and is a useful proxy of early human cognition. This paper reviews the evidence for Pleistocene maritim...
Poster
The poster is available online at EGU website: https://meetingorganizer.copernicus.org/EGU2020/EGU2020-19782.html | Particle flows animations are available at SaRoCy's website: http://sarocy.cut.ac.cy/news/particles-flow-animations/ | Maritime connectivity between Cyprus and other Eastern Mediterranean coastal regions on the mainland constitutes a...
Article
Obsidian, a naturally occurring glass and rare resource, appears in the archaeological record of Cyprus at the same time when human populations establish permanent settlements across the island. Geological sources of obsidian do not occur on Cyprus so the material had to be procured elsewhere and then introduced to the eastern Mediterranean island....
Article
This paper presents the results of the compositional analysis conducted on carnelian beads from Aceramic Neolithic sites on the island of Cyprus. Carnelian is a rare raw material with alleged geological sources in the broader eastern Mediterranean–western Asia region. Most of these sources remain little explored and no detailed data concerning thei...
Article
Full-text available
This paper presents the results of the geochemical characterisation of complete obsidian assemblages dating to the Early Aceramic Neolithic (8200–6900 Cal BC) and located in Cyprus, eastern Mediterranean. Obsidian artefacts have over the years been recovered from a number of Early Holocene archaeological sites on the island of Cyprus. As there are...
Article
This study presents an overview of obsidian use from archaeological sites located on the island of Cyprus and spanning the period broadly defined as the Aceramic Neolithic (ca. 8900-5200 Cal bc). Diachronic changes in the use of this exotic raw material are investigated through the study of the quantities, general typo-technological characteristics...
Poster
Full-text available
MedSTACH is the acronym for an AGILE-supported Teaming Phase 1 project (one year duration) aiming to design a Cyprus-based Eastern Mediterranean Science and Technology Centre of Excellence for Archaeology and Cultural Heritage (CH).
Poster
MedSTACH is the acronym for an AGILE-supported Teaming Phase 1 project (one year duration) aiming to design a Cyprus-based Eastern Mediterranean Science and Technology Centre of Excellence for Archaeology and Cultural Heritage (CH). MedSTACH’s mission encompasses the development of the necessary scientific and technological environment for advancin...
Poster
Full-text available
This session examines how exotic materials were circulated and used across the Mediterranean during the terminal Pleistocene – early Holocene. Of particular interest is the movement of exotic items across the Mediterranean seascape reaching the various Mediterranean islands from the neighbouring mainland. Case studies are welcome that show how soci...
Article
Social behaviour is notoriously difficult to study archaeologically and it is unclear how large the networks of prehistoric humans were, or how they remained connected. Maintaining social cohesion was crucial for early humans because social networks facilitate cooperation and are imperative for survival and reproduction. Recent hunter–gatherer soci...
Article
Full-text available
Archaeologists regard the demonstration of human antiquity in 1859 as a major breakthrough in the development of prehistoric studies. However, the significance of this event, although acknowledged by other disciplines, is largely passed over. We investigate why this is so by examining the procedures that the antiquary John Evans and the geologist J...

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Projects

Projects (4)
Project
The island of Cyprus, eastern Mediterranean, is best known for its Bronze Age past, whereas very little is known with regards to its earliest prehistory. This is particularly true with regards to the Pleistocene period for which no archaeological evidence has yet been unearthed from anywhere on the island. Given that a) Cyprus is the biggest island in the region, b) other islands in the area, for example Crete, are exploited by hunter-gatherers at this time and, c) evidence for human exploitation of insular landscapes is well attested in other parts of the world, e.g. Australia, the lack of Pleistocene archaeology on Cyprus is peculiar. This project aims at addressing this issue by using predictive modelling to establish the potential early routes and prime exploitation locales during the earliest human visitations to the island. Emphasis is placed on determining the fresh water networks that would have existed on the island during the Pleistocene enabling humans to successfully manage the new environment. By doing so the project will significantly enhance our current knowledge on one of the most exciting new topics in archaeological research worldwide, namely island colonisation, especially in a part of the world where this phenomenon remains largely unexplored.
Project
SaRoCy responds to the cutting-edge, frontier research requirement of the “Excellence Hubs” Programme by seeking to create new knowledge on a topic that has recently attracted global archaeological attention within the broader context of island and coastal archaeology. Project also aspires to offer novel insights based on physical/environmental modelling and computer simulation into the possible prehistoric maritime pathways between Cyprus and other Eastern Mediterranean coastal regions at the boundary between Terminal Pleistocene – early Holocene (Epipaleolithic / early Neolithic), a critical period for understanding the origins of the early visitors in Cyprus in connection with the Neolithic transition. The SaRoCy project proposal was ranked 2nd (score 14.52 / 15) out of a total of 65 proposals submitted to the “Social and Humanities” scientific area of the specific call. The project will run for 24 months with an overall budget of €150k, mainly allocated to young researchers participating in the project. Website: http://sarocy.cut.ac.cy/ This project has received funding from the “Excellence Hubs” Programme within the “RESTART 2016-2020” funding framework for Research, Technological Development and Innovation (RTDI) administered by Cyprus’s Research & Innovation Foundation under Grant Agreement No EXCELLENCE/0918/0143.