MASC has a new publication out, reviewing two+ years of research at Ambroyi, and putting our data from the site in the context of wider discussions of political economy and social life in the Near Eastern middle ages. The article, which is available (with a subscription) here, is titled:
Examining the Late Medieval Village from the Case at Ambroyi, Armenia
by Kathryn J. Franklin, Tasha Vorderstrasse, and Frina Babayan. Journal of Near Eastern Studies 76, no. 1 (April 2017): 113-138.
We’re excited to have this work out in the world– and looking forward to responses from our colleagues.
We have started excavations within the medieval (AD 12-15th c) settlement at Arpa, located in the current village of Areni. Our 2016 excavation program consists of a number of test trenches located through the preserved areas of the settlement, which is itself being dug into by the contemporary Areni village cemetery. This adds an urgency to our explorations, as every week new areas of the site are being reserved, cleared and dug for gravesites. At the same time, the active digging in the settlement (which extends along a broad slope to the south of the village, beyond the reconstructed 14th c Sb. Astvatsatsin church) provides us with additional data about the geological and archaeological strata of the site beyond our own investigations. For instance, a recent grave digging brought to light this fragment of a medieval stamp-decorated redware jar or karas (here’s an image of a complete one in the national museum).