Sights of Crete. Legend of Knossos the palace

Knossos Palace – one of the most picturesque places, which is located just a few kilometers from Heraklion, the capital of Crete. Knossos the palace, or rather its magnificent ruins, remain in the area increased interest of historians and archaeologists. Scientists never came to a consensus on what he was representing: the temple, a palace, a place of human sacrifice, and maybe a labyrinth Minotaur?


Бесспорно, наибольший интерес у туристов вызывает сугубоmythological version. According to legends, the Minotaur lived in the palace – ferocious creature with the body of a man and the head of a bull. And every For nine years the Athenians paid Minos, the king of Crete, a terrible tribute: Seven beautiful young men and seven innocent girls. Unfortunate sent to be eaten by the Minotaur in punishment of the Athenians for murder Androgeya, son of Minos. The victims were locked up in the famous Labyrinth, whose master was the Minotaur. He ate the victims who did not have time save yourself According to legend, Theseus delivered the Athenians from tribute by killing scary minotaur. With the help of the daughter of Minos Ariadne and her tangle he brought the people out of the confused Labyrinth.

Sights of Crete. Legend of the Palace of Knossos

Surprisingly, it is considered the Knossos Palace the epitome of the tale of the Minotaur, although Crete has quite a few palaces, any of which could be the notorious Labyrinth. The explanation for this fact is the confusing and truly strange the architecture of this palace. It has several levels, some of which go deep into the ground, confusing network of corridors, complex transitions, numerous rooms and rooms, secret passages, dead ends and stairs. In general, the architecture of the palace creates an impression utter randomness. Its layout does not lend itself to logic: separate corridors unexpectedly ended in dead ends, the intricacies of the stairs that permeated the palace from top to bottom led going nowhere. In addition, the palace has kept many images, one of whose characters were a bull.

Sights of Crete. Legend of the Palace of Knossos

However, there is a more prosaic version, according to which The Palace of Knossos is directly connected to the labyrinth of the Minotaur. Numerous frescoes found in the palace convey the image bilateral ax, labrisa. Analogy with the term “labyrinth” begs automatically. Like it or not, remains a mystery. Historians and archaeologists will need a lot of effort to unravel her.

Sights of Crete. Legend of the Palace of Knossos

It is reliably known that the ruins of the Palace of Knossos were discovered only in 1878. His excavations began in 1900. With this his first studies date back to the year under the direction of British archaeologist A. Evans. Excavations were carried out over 30 years. They allowed to discover many interesting details: territory the palace was a major settlement related to necropolis, the ancient Minoan period. The palace itself belonged to the beginning Minoan period. He has repeatedly completed and expanded than and may be due to the randomness of planning and design. During the excavation by scientists it was found that the original palace had three floors and numerous basements. In them there were cellars, workshops, dungeons, food warehouses and weapons. The upper rooms of the palace were reserved for the throne and ceremonial halls, treasuries and religious services. Surprised researchers well-developed plumbing and sewer systems representing real networks of clay pipes different diameter. Also in the palace were found toilet rooms, baths and pools that joined the system sewage. No less remarkable elements of the palace steel massive marble columns that successfully supported floors

Sights of Crete. Legend of the Palace of Knossos

The luxury of the palace and its interior decoration, as well as precious metals found on its ruins, and also storage rooms that hold countless reserves food and things eloquently say that kings and the inhabitants of Crete were rich enough. And no less well educated: archaeologists have discovered a large number of clay tablets with intricate inscriptions, most of which do not decipher succeeded to this day. Those inscriptions that were decrypted, gave understand that the inhabitants of Knossos were actively engaged in the production gold and bronze vessels, fabrics, chariots, perfumery oils.

During its long existence, the Palace of Knossos has was partially destroyed for unexplained reasons. It was erected approximately in 1400 BC After the destruction of his rebuilt again, but after a century a strong earthquake reopened it hurt. The reconstruction of the palace began again, but the eruption a volcano on Santorini wiped it off the face of the earth. Turned into ruins we can see it today.

How to get to the Palace of Knossos (map)

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