The study coves all the individual graves and their furniture excavated at Tocra from the time of G. Dennis 1865-1867 up to the excavations carried out by the writer of this research between 1988 - 1990.
Those excavations furnished adequate archaeological material which motivated such a study of this type of tombs.
Some of those excavations were published but they have not received proper study and consequently requires reconsiderations and further investigations like those of Dnnis, Robester 1944, Brown 1947 and the excavations of write 1956.
Others represent novel archaeological material like the tombs excavated in 1967, 1968, 1972, 1987 and those of 1988-1990.
This type of tombs was particularly chosen because it was insufficiently investigated at neither the region of Cyrenaica nor Tocra's levels. The individual graves of this city were especially chosen because they were the dominate type of tombs in Tocra during a long period of time; this undoubtedly helps in studding the burial rites and its developments if existed at all.
The nature of the material "the tombs" and the method adopted in studding it led to dividing the thesis into two main parts: part one deals with the individual graves and part two deals with the funeral furniture found in those tombs. Each part is subdivided into three chapters as follows:
Chapter one: Historical and Geographical background of Tocra
This chapter deals with:
The historical and geographical aspects of the city of Tocra and it is therefore an introductory chapter. It is at the same time indispensable for it gives the study of the tombs a time and place dimensions.
The geographical location of the city as well as the natural factors which played a part in founding it.
The importance of the fossil dunes where the individual graves were dugout.
The soil of the city and how it contributed to the manufacturing of pottery in Tocra.
The ... of settlement in the city before the coming of the Greeks in order to establish the existence of Libyans in this region in pre-historical times and during the Greeco-Roman settlements.
The renomations of the city during this long period.
The historical periods up to the first century A.D when this type of tombs ceased to be practiced.
The relationship between the Libyans and the Greeks.
And Lastly the urban developments of Tocra and its main monuments.
Chapter two: A study of the individual graves
This chapter is concerned with the individual graves in Tocra and is divided into an introduction and eight topics.
The introduction deals with the emergence and the prevalence of the individual graves in both the ancient world and in Cyrenaica. It also deals with reasons behind the emergence and prevalence of those graves at Tocra in particular as compared to other cities in Cyrenaica.
Topic I deals with recovering the individual graves. This serves as an introduction to the study of those tombs for the history of discronvering them includes all the excavations carried out in those graves which are the subject of our research. Those excavations were evaluated and criticized in order to reveal this a vantages and disadvantages. It also deals with the method of work and the way of digging adopted in the 1988-1990 excavations which is believed to be as the ideal method in digging such tombs.
Topic II is concerned with the choice of site for the individual graves in Tocra and why such sites were chosen as well as the method employed in preparing and designing the graves.
Topic III gives description of the tombs from Dennis's to 1988-90 excavations. Every single descriptions gives the location and general descriptions of all the tombs including orientations, type of tomb, covering, number, dimension, manner of burial, position of decease and any other particularity of each tomb. The description includes a list of findings and the number of each item in the catalogue.
Topic IV studies the different designs figured out through a study of the major characteristics of all the graves. Two main type were established. Each has numerous forms and styles. Each style is then given a definition, the location of its tombs in Tocra cemeteries, orientations, interior and exterior descriptions, size, and dimensions.
The date of each style compared to other tombs in or outside the region are also discussed.
Topic V studies the human remains found in the tombs with emphasis on determining the sex and age of the deceased and why the remains were not fully and scientifically examined.
Topic VI studies the re-use of the tombs. It was noticed that a number of tombs were later re-used. This phenomena is fully reviewed; namely where, how, why and when this phenomena was practiced.
Topic VII is termed the community of Tocra through its individual graves. Some social aspects deducted from the study of the individual graves are presented starting with the inhabitants of Tocra and determining the class that were buried in those tombs and attempting to determine the size of the population through the tombs.
The study of the tombs also revealed some social organizations concerned with family relations and economic and class disparity.
Topic VIII deals with the history of the individual graves. Here, the methods of dating these graves are generally criticized and a new method of dating Tocra graves is propose. The history of Tocra individual graves of each excavation is given based on the dates of findings. These finding are fully discussed in part two. Tombs already published are redated.
It was then important to discuss the Greek burial rites with their application to Tocra graves. Chapter three of this study is therefore is devoted to this subject. This chapter is divided into three main topics:
Topic I deals with the Greek outlook to death, burial, and the underworld.
Topic II deals with the funeral rites and customs where procedures followed from the time of death until the burial and the subsequent rites.
Topic III is concerned with the funeral furniture namely what the furniture is, why it is placed in the tombs and its different kinds in general with emphasis on the furniture found in Tocra individual graves with regard to its deferent types, position, number of items, its relation to the decease's economic status and sex.
To acquaint the reader with all the graves discovered special catalogues describing the tombs and all relevant material-fully discussed in chapter two and three are attached.
This part deals with the funeral furniture found in the individual graves and is consequently related to part one. Here the furniture is looked at in terms of its types, its vase "forms and styles" and its tools. These are classified and dated.
The method adapted in studding the furniture is introduced in the beginning of this part.
Chapter one of part two studies decorated and glared pottery (1-34). These vases are classified as Panathenaic amphorae, red-figure vases, miscellaneous and black-figure vases. Each is separately discussed.
The Panathenaic amphorae (1-6) are viewed by giving a brief account of the celebration in which the Panathenaic amphorae were granted and how such amphorae reached Tocra.
The decorated elements of the Panathenaic amphorae are comparatively and analytically studied and then dated.
The re-figure vases (7-12) are classified according to their form like the Lekythoi ... etc. The names of different vases, their usage in daily life and burial rites are presented. The main decorated elements of each vase and their origins are also dealt with. They are then compared with similar examples found in other sites and dated according to their style.
The some method is applied in studding the miscellaneous (3-17) like the Corinthian cups and the black-figure vases (18-34).
Chapter two is devoted to vases made of coarse pottery (35-140). The importance of this kind of pottery in general and to Tocra in particular is introduced. The classification of different vases as well as the components and their characteristic are experimented in the lab by the writer are also given. The method of dating is then pointed out.
Coaise pottery is divided according to its forms and functions, drinking, transporting vases ... etc. Each type is further subdivided into styles in accordance to their developments.
The method followed in studding coarse pottery is the same as that applied in studding the decorated and black-glazed pottery. Lastly, the manufacturing of coarse pottery at Tocra from the fifth century B.C to the first century A.D is discussed.
Chapter three deals with other finds (150-228) such as lamps, Terra-cottas, marbles, Glass and metals. Each class is discussed separately: Lamps (150-174) for example are divided into two groups, imported and local. They are then classified into various types according to their forms and origins as well as the general development of Greek lamps and their characteristics. They are then compared to similar models to date them. In the end, the percentages of imported to locally made lamps is presented. Lastly, the artistic influences on the locally made lamps are viewed.
The method applied in studding the lamps is also adopted in studding the items manufactured in terra-cotta (175-211) like the terra- cotta figurines and other make-up objects with emphasis on Tanagra style which is very common.
Marble, Glass (212-215) and metal finds (216-228) are similarly studied with concentrations on the function of each object in daily life and consequently their value in the burial rites and customs.
The research ends with main conclusions reached by the writer through studding the individual graves.
Separate volume of numerous appendixes is attached to the thesis.
Appendix one lists all the funeral furniture studied. It identified the finding, its catalogue number, source, current place and its number in the storeroom or museum files.
Appendix two (the catalogue)) gives a minute and comprehensive description of each finding in terms of dimensions, source, full description and other extra information not included in the paper. This means that the catalogue complements part two of the research; so that if the researcher wants to know more about any finding he or she can refer to this appendix.
Appendix three gives a detailed accounts of the components of the pottery through a petrological analytic.
There is also another chart which presents some statistics of the ratios and percentages of certain perfume bottles the inguentaria dimensions.
Appendix four gives a list of names and number of cities as they appear in the maps.
Appendix five is devoted to maps, figures and illustrations of tombs, some of which are prepared by the writer himself, others were prepared by the late Dr. F. Shaaban. The writer's wife Muna Bel Khair has helped in producing most of the illustrations in their final forms.
Appendix six gives charts designed according to Excel 5 system and is concerned with the graves and their funeral furniture.
Appendix seven gives plates and forms of the graves and their funeral furniture.