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Our full catalogue is presented here by publication date. Volumes published under the McDonald Monographs Series (hardback) are distributed by Oxbow Books/Casemate Academic. Direct links to Oxbow Books are included in the catalogue where the book is still in print. Volumes published under the McDonald Conversations Series (online open access only) have links to the University of Cambridge repository Apollo, where they may be freely accessed. 

A small number of back catalogue volumes, where marked, are also available for sale as e-books.


Making citiesFierce lions, angry mice and fat-tailed sheep | Gardening time | 



Gardening time: Monuments and landscape from Sardinia, Scotland and Central Europe in the very long Iron Age

edited by Simon Stoddart, Ethan D. Aines & Caroline Malone

eBook | ISBN 978-1-913344-04-7 | xxii + 242 pp. | 96 figs | 5 tables | 2021 | Download now

 Gardening may seem worlds away from Nuraghi and brochs, but tending a garden is a long process involving patience, accretion and memory. Scholars argue that memories are also cultured, developed and regained. The monuments in Scotland and Sardinia are testament to the importance of memory and its role in maintaining social relations. This collection of twenty-one papers addresses the theme of memory anchored to the enduring presence of monuments, mainly from Scotland and Sardinia, but also from Central Europe and the Balkans.

Simon Stoddart is a Professor in the Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge.

Ethan D. Aines is a Policy Assistant at Cambridge Zero, Centre for Science and Policy at the University of Cambridge.

Caroline Malone is Professor of Prehistory at Queen’s University, Belfast

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Fierce lions, angry mice and fat-tailed sheep: Animal encounters in the ancient Near East

edited by Laerke Recht and Christina Tsouparopoulou

eBook | ISBN 978-1-913344-05-4 | xiii + 289 pp. | 99 figs | 20 tables | 2021 | Download now

Animals have always been an integral part of human existence. In the ancient Near East, this is evident in the record of excavated assemblages of faunal remains, iconography and – for the later historical periods – texts. Animals have predominantly been examined as part of consumption and economy, and while these are important aspects of society in the ancient Near East, the relationships between humans and animals were extremely varied and complex.

Domesticated animals had great impact on social, political and economic structures – for example cattle in agriculture and diet, or donkeys and horses in transport, trade and war. Fantastic mythological beasts such as lion-headed eagles or Anzu-birds in Mesopotamia or Egyptian deities such as the falcon-headed god Horus were part of religious beliefs and myths, while exotic creatures such as lions were part of elite symbolling from the fourth millennium bc onward. In some cases, animals also intruded on human lives in unwanted ways by scavenging or entering the household; this especially applies to small or wild animals. But animals were also attributed agency with the ability to solve problems; the distinction between humans and other animals often blurs in ritual, personal and place names, fables and royal ideology. They were helpers, pets and companions in life and death, peace and war. An association with cult and mortuary practices involves sacrifice and feasting, while some animals held special symbolic significance.

This volume is a tribute to the animals of the ancient Near East (including Mesopotamia, Anatolia, the Levant and Egypt), from the fourth through first millennia bc, and their complex relationship with the environment and other human and nonhuman animals. Offering faunal, textual and iconographic studies, the contributions present a fascinating array of the many ways in which animals influence human life and death, and explore new perspectives in the exciting field of human-animal studies as applied to this part of the world.

Laerke Recht is Professor of Early Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology at the University of Graz, Austria, and a former Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow at the McDonald Institute of Archaeological Research, University of Cambridge. She is particularly interested in and has published on human–animal relations in the ancient Near East, Cyprus and Aegean.

Christina Tsouparopoulou is Assistant Professor in Near Eastern Archaeology at the Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw, Poland, Senior Research Associate and Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow at the McDonald Institute of Archaeological Research and Fellow of Wolfson College, Cambridge. She specializes in the material and textual culture of the Near East and Eastern Mediterranean in the third and second millennia bc.

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Making cities: Economies of production and urbanization in Mediterranean Europe, 1000 - 500 BC 

edited by Margarita Gleba, Beatriz Marín-Aguilera and Bela Dimova

eBook | ISBN 978-1-913344-06-1 | xvii + 454 pp. | 231 figs | 22 tables | 2021 | Download now

Large and complex settlements appeared across the north Mediterranean during the period 1000–500 bc, from the Aegean basin to Iberia, as well as north of the Alps. The region also became considerably more interconnected. Urban life and networks fostered new consumption practices, requiring different economic and social structures to sustain them. This book considers the emergence of cities in Mediterranean Europe, with a focus on the economy. What was distinctive about urban lifeways across the Mediterranean? How did different economic activities interact, and how did they transform power hierarchies? How was urbanism sustained by economic structures, social relations and mobility? The authors bring to the debate recently excavated sites and regions that may be unfamiliar to wider (especially Anglophone) scholarship, alongside fresh reappraisals of well-known cities. The variety of urban life, economy and local dynamics prompts us to reconsider ancient urbanism through a comparative perspective.


Margarita Gleba is a Professor at the University of Padua and Honorary Senior Lecturer at University College London.

Beatriz Marín-Aguilera is a Renfrew Fellow at the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, University of Cambridge.

Bela Dimova is a A. G. Leventis Fellow in Hellenic Studies at the British School at Athens.


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