- De Troon van Potamon: reizigers en wetenschappers canoniseren de Levant
- Zeventiende Eeuw
- Volume | Issue number
- 26 | 2
- Pages (from-to)
- Number of pages
- Document type
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
- Amsterdam Institute for Humanities Research (AIHR)
With the fall of Constantinople and the rise of Ottoman power in the Levant an Iron Curtain was lowered, effectively cutting off European contact with the antiquities in Athens, Greece,
and Asia Minor. For a long period of time, representations in word or image were mainly based on sources from Antiquity. However, in the course of the seventeenth century this isolation gradually changed, due to a growing Levant trade. An increasing number of travellers on these tracks, among whom the Dutch regent’s son Gerard Hinlopen of Hoorn, started to explore areas hitherto largely unknown. Their new encounters, recorded in descriptions and sketches, were gratefully adopted by both the academic discourse on Antiquity and the commercial industry of travel writing. This article focuses on the European ‘rediscovery’ of Lesbos. It charts the multi-media renaissance of the island and its archaeological treasure of Potamon’s Throne, which, through the agency of bold explorers, ambitious scholars of Antiquity, market-aware printers, and highly competitive collectors, was turned into one of the great icons of the Levant.
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