Walther Sallaberger, "Home-made Bread, Municipal Mutton, Royal Wine. Establishing Social Relations during the Preparation and Consumption of Food in Religious Festivals at Late Bronze Age Emar", in: Between Feasts and Daily Meals. Towards an Archaeology of Commensal Spaces, eTopoi. Journal for Ancient Studies, Special Volume 2 (2012), 157–177


In the urban culture of the ancient Near East religious festivals offer a major occasion to present and to re-establish the social networks of a city. An analysis of the ritual texts from the Late Bronze Age city of Emar (13th century BC) reveals how various groups in the urban society were involved in the preparation and consumption of food. Feasting meant the participation of persons from different households at urban localities such as a temple. Most interestingly the meaning of the foodstuffs consumed in urban festivals was already established during their preparation, in which various organizations were involved.

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