Archaeological travel in "Rich Mycenae"
It was the first time I went journey to Mycenae, in this very important archaeological site... I had the pleasure and honor to have close two very remarkable and important people: the archeology professor at Dickinson College Christofili Mangidi, President of the Mycenaean Foundation responsible excavation of Mycenae Lower City, and his sweetest wife Molly, archeologist and professor of the university of Pennsylvania (USA). The days I spent with them made me richer in knowledge, images and feelings!

Tour the Acropolis of Mycenae ...

Early in the morning we started our tour in the archaeological site of Mycenae, because the sun does not "joking" this season. Crossing the entrance to climb the Acropolis of Mycenae, the feeling is ... awesome! We walk the same paths of a place that for centuries was considered the cradle of the civilization of ancient Greece, and was the center of the development of the Mycenaean civilization.

In ancient times, Argolida occupied the area between the hills of Tritou, the plain of Astros and Lyrkia mountains Artemisium and Partheniou. Today, bordered to the north by Corinthia, south of Kynouria and west with Arcadia.
'Rich Mycenae "Homer said founded by Perseus in the 15th century. B.C. Seeking a place to establish his kingdom, passing from Mycenae, fell the fungus (handle) the sword. The incident was considered divine sign so Perseus decided to establish his kingdom there. Mycenae reached the peak of their glory when the throne occupied by the dynasty of the Atreides, whose founder was the sons of Atreus and Agamemnon and Menelaus. The 12th century. B.C. King Agamemnon of Mycenae presented as the leader of the Greeks led to the Trojan expedition and eventually to victory. After the Trojan War begins the decline of the Mycenaean kingdoms ...

Going up to the Acropolis, to the right we find our remains of a group of buildings known as West House, House of the Sphinxes, House of Shields and House of the Oil Merchant. The first monument we find the archaeological site is the Grave Circle B, which dates back to the late 17th - early 16th century. B.C. It contained 24 graves and important offerings (such as a visor amber and a vase of rock crystal).

Just beyond are the vaulted tombs of Clytemnestra (1500 BC) and Aegisthus (1220 BC). Leaving behind the vaulted tombs, continue the path leading to the walls of Mycenae Acropolis,900m in length ., Also known as "Cyclopean". According to legend, Perseus moved from Lycia the Cyclopes, superhuman giants to build the walls. Its creation dates back to the 14th century. BC, except the Lion Gate and the west, which were built in the 13th century. B.C. For their manufacture huge boulders used without binder. To fasten, using smaller stones as wedges to fill the gaps. They had a height of 12 m. And thickness ranging from 3-7 meters.

The Citadel had two entrances: an auxiliary in the north and the monumental main entrance, known as the "Lion Gate" (due to the two facing lions adorning the relieving triangle lintel). Protected by a powerful tower and the sides had two vertical monolithic pilasters, 3.10 m in height ., Which is united with a lintel weighing over 12 tons. At the Gate threshold even distinguish holes from the heavy wooden door that opened and closed the entrance ...

Passing the impressive Lion Gate, on the right we see the funerary precinct A, which was originally located outside the Acropolis walls. Later, with the expansion of 1250 BC included therein. Two rows of vertical stones Iraio define the precinct diameter of 28 m. It included six graves of the 16th century. BC, which were found 19 dead, probably belonged to the royal family at that time reigned at Mycenae (not to Agamemnon and his followers) and many valuable objects and jewelry in gold and silver swords with engraved scenes, masks and gold films
Going up the stone fidogyristo path we reach the Palace of the Kings of Mycenae. Passing the monumental porch, entering a corridor and from there into a large courtyard. West of there was a room that was used as a hostel rather official. To the east of the courtyard stood the mansion which consisted of an open entrance with two columns, the vestibule, and a great room with a fireplace in the center and four columns around it, where the king seated on his throne, greeted his guests ... The walls of the room were covered in colorful murals.
East of the palace preserved building complex of the "House of the columns" and "Workshop of Artists" and the buildings probably played the role of warehouses. Further down, left from the auxiliary gate surprise of the north, there is the entrance of the aqueduct that passes under the walls and leads to a water reservoir, which is fed from a source, 300 m. Away from the Acropolis. The tank is identical to the 'Perseus' fountain' of Pausanias. The construction of the underground reservoir is one of the most spectacular achievements of Mycenaean art water. The existence of water ensure continued adequacy of the Acropolis of Mycenae and was the main reason for extension of the wall in the northeastern part.
At this point ending our stroll to the Acropolis of Mycenae and order is our visit to the Archaeological Museum of Mycenae, located at the rear of the main entrance of the site. Here you can admire many of the outstanding findings brought to light by the excavations of archaeologists, after hard work, knowledge and belief in their cause.

The "Treasury of Atreus"

A few meters before the entrance to the Acropolis of Mycenae, the left of the road we stop to visit the largest and most imposing of the vaulted tombs of Mycenae, known as the "Treasure of Atreus" (about 1250 BC). The corridor leading to the tomb of Atreus is 36 m in length ., And its walls are covered with huge stones, arranged in parallel horizontal rows.
The inlet has a height of 5.40 m. And was surrounded by two half columns of amygdaliti stone, which were decorated with carved spirals. Above the mouth distinguishes relieving triangle which was covered with a plate decorated with linear matters movies and flanked by half-columns with spiral groove. The tomb entrance closed with two-leaf wooden door (even distinguish the holes on the threshold and the entrance roof). Particularly impressive is the lintel, weighing 122 tonnes, consisting of two huge boulders.

Entering inside the domed tomb impressive shape in a honeycomb shape and enormous height (13.40 m.). The chamber is built in ekforic way, that every stone be turned toward the center, to create the dome. Among the horizontal stones that formed the canopy entering like a wedge gems that sparkle like firmament in the dark.
The dead were placed in the center and around them there was a multitude of precious objects that accompanied them in the next life. Inside the chamber there is a second square room, which probably played the role of "ossuaries."
The imposing interior of the tomb of Atreus in nails with the impressive way of construction, but with the soft, suggestive penumbra that manages to sneak through the open entrance and to mentally transfer to other times ...

The excavations of the Lower City

Afternoon downhill to the site excavation of the Lower City of Mycenae, just beneath the Acropolis, along with Professor Christofili Mangidi, who supervises the systematic geophysical survey (2003 - 2016) and excavation of the Lower City of Mycenae (2007 - 2013), conducted under the auspices of the Archaeological Society at Athens, with the generous financial and logistical support of the Institute for Aegean Prehistory (INSTAP) of Dickinson College and the Mycenaean Foundation (Mycenaean Foundation).
As the professor Christofili Mangidis, "the settlement of the Lower City of Mycenae identified and mapped using satellite photography, aerial photography and geophysical research. The excavation of the settlement surrounded by outer wall with at least two central gates, confirmed the results of the geophysical survey, revealing houses, workshops, craft complexes, warehouses and burials. Archaeological research illuminates aspects of daily life in Mycenaean Greece, the dynamics of the settlement relations with the palace, the systematic and organized human intervention in the formation and transformation of the ancient environment in historical conditions, natural disasters, pulp-economic structural and systemic pathologies which led to the decline of the Mycenaean civilization.
For the first time since the first excavations of the 19th century. Mycenae ascertained the existence of an organized and comprehensive settlement around the Acropolis. This is the only palace Mycenaean settlement has been located accurately and systematically excavated. For the first time also, the continuous habitation of the area certified by the late Mycenaean period (13th c. BC) to the late Archaic period (480 BC) with the discovery stratigraphy successive architectural remains of the Late Bronze Age, the Proto-geometric and Archaic period, giving rise to cultural continuity of the Mycenaean Greece and the historical period. "

The discovery of the throne of Agamemnon!

During paleo-hydrological measurements in the bed and the banks of the stream of Chavou under systematic geophysical survey in the Lower City of Mycenae, was identified on 12 June 2014 by members of the scientific team of Professor Christofili Mangidi (more specifically, from their archeology graduate students Erik DeMarch and Dan Fallu) large stone fragment of the Mycenaean royal throne, just below the palace of Mycenae. This discovery caused a sensation because of the uniqueness of the find and archeological value, as it is the only so far discovered throne Mycenaean palace in mainland Greece, and the semantic of gravity as a symbol associated with the myth and ancient literary tradition.
The multifaceted and interdisciplinary study finding, for two years, led to the safe identification as part of the throne of the last phase of the Palace of Mycenae (1250-1200 BC).
The interpretation of the throne based on interrelated archaeological evidence, archaeological parallel, inside and outside of Greece, morphological and technical analysis, geological and topographical study, comparative dimensions and proportions examination, analysis, impact traces, studying historical sources and texts.
The scientific publication, maintenance and enhancement of Mycenae throne is imperative, as it is one of the most important and emblematic findings of the Mycenaean era.

The Mycenaean Institute (MI)

Within walking distance from the archaeological site of Mycenae are the facilities of the Mycenaean Foundation, overlooking the Argolic plain and the citadel of Mycenae. These buildings are intended for use by archaeologists and scientists as operational base of the excavations and laboratories for studies at Mycenae. Recently, under the chairmanship of Professor Christofili Mangidi the Mycenaean Foundation proceeded in agreement with Dickinson College and academic consortium 20 universities from the US and the European Union, to create, to finance and operate university center in the Foundation infrastructure in Mycenae for semi-annual or annual undergraduate courses for overseas students, with emphasis in archeology, geology, Geoarchaeology, palaioperivallontikes studies, management and promotion of cultural heritage, ancient / modern greek, ancient history and art history.
The center will create many new jobs will help the economic development of the region and promote the study and dissemination of Greek culture abroad.

Excursions that are worth ...

With our starting Mycenae would do and many interesting excursions in the surrounding beautiful area ...
How, then, for an escape to the romantic Nafplion to wander the atmospheric streets, to climb as Palamidi and to enjoy the breathtaking views, go for a swim in Karathona beach or in Tolo, to enjoy good food in taverns which spread their tables in the alleys of the Old Town of Nafplio with bougainvillea and jasmine, to enjoy a special ice cream or watch one of the most interesting cultural events organized in the summer here ...
This season we also observe a remarkable performance at the ancient theater of Epidaurus, located nearby.
It is worth making a visit to one of the oldest and most historic castles in Greece, Argos Castle or Castle of Larissa. The site had been fortified since prehistoric times. The final configuration of the castle became the Franks. The first people settled in Argos were the Pelasgians and the names are pelasgikes. "Argos" means plain and "Larissa" means citadel or rooted stone.
Another good suggestion for diving in crystal clear waters is to make a dash to the Astros, with lovely sand spreader and a view of the Castle and the picturesque village at the foot of the hill. In the seaside taverns we will drink our ouzo and enjoy fresh fish and seafood, as well as many delicious treats ... together with our friends. What better dream?

Useful websites for the excavations at Mycenae:
Biography / X website. Mangidi:
Website Mycenae excavations:
Website Mycenaean Foundation:
Dickinson College:
Archaeological Society of Athens:

Tags: Greece throuth Ioanna's eye, MYCENAE, ARCHAELOGICAL TRAVEL, SUMMER
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