The Greek Chest (English language edition)
Over 500 colour illustrations. Distributed by University of Exeter Press.
For many centuries, the chest was the only piece of storage furniture to be found in the Greek home. Highly valuable as a functional item, its connection with a wide range of everyday events and the most important stations in a person's life (birth, marriage and death) gave the chest, at a very early date, a more profound, symbolic meaning in the imagination of the Greek people.
The important functional role of the chest is apparent in its decoration, which in general reflect beliefs and faith. These beliefs differ from place to place, and this can be seen in the different manner of decoration, which may also depend on general historic and social circumstances and events, as well as the artistic tradition of the region.
Drawing on rich seams of Greek folklore and the fruits of many years of field research in every corner of Greece, they offer an in-depth interpretation of the wealth of decoration found on chests, in the hope of providing a key that will unlock the secrets of these forgotten pieces of furniture and draw out the treasures of the Greek psyche that lie concealed within them.
PREFACE Angelos Delivorrias
FOREWORD Ιoanna Papantoniou
PUBLISHERS’ NOTE Rachel and Moses Kapon
THE CHEST IN FOLK TRADITION
Superstitions, beliefs, traditions, folk tales, songs
PRODUCTION AND USES OF THE CHEST
Kinds of chests, their production and uses
MATERIALS / CONSTRUCTION / ADDED FEET ON TYPE B CHESTS / LIDS / HANDLES / THE LOCK AND KEY / THE INSIDE COMPARTMENT / PRODUCTION OF CHESTS / USES OF CHESTS
CHESTS WITH SPECIAL USES
Kinds and manners of decoration, decorative motifs
PAINTED CHESTS / WOOD - CARVED CHESTS / CHESTS DECORATED WITH ADDED MATERIALS / DECORATIVE MOTIFS
The Itinerary of research
NORTHEAST AEGEAN Mytilene / Chios / Samos / Ikaria
SPORADES Skyros / Skopelos
NORTHEAST GREECE Western Thrace and Macedonia
CENTRAL AND WESTERN MACEDONIA
WESTERN EPIRUS – SOULI
Identity of the objects illustrated and additional information
VIRGINIA MATSELI Ethnologist
ARIS TSARAVOPOULOS Archaeologist
PREFACE: Angelos Delivorrias Director of the Benaki Museum
FOREWORD: Ιoanna Papantoniou Set Designer – Costumier, President of the Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation
Over 500 colour llus.