Top Ten Minoan Artifacts

Top Ten Minoan Artifacts

       The Minoan civilization was a Bronze Age civilization that arose on the island of Crete and flourished from approximately the 27th century to the 15th century BC. It was rediscovered at the beginning of the 20th century through the work of the British archaeologist Arthur Evans. Will Durant referred to it as “the first link in the European chain.” The early inhabitants of Crete may have settled as early as 128,000 BC, during the Middle Paleolithic age. However, it was not until 5,000 BC that the first signs of advanced agriculture appeared.

  1. Phaistos Disc

    The Phaistos Disc is a disk of fired clay from the Minoan palace of Phaistos on the Greek island of Crete, possibly dating to the middle or late Minoan Bronze Age (2nd millennium BC). It is about 15 cm (5.9 in) in diameter and covered on both sides with a spiral of stamped symbols. Its purpose and meaning, and even its original geographical place of manufacture, remain disputed, making it one of the most famous mysteries of archaeology. This unique object is now on display at the archaeological museum of Heraklion. The disc was discovered in 1908 by the Italian archaeologist Luigi Pernier in the Minoan palace-site of Phaistos and features 241 tokens, comprising 45 unique signs, which were apparently made by pressing pre-formed hieroglyphic “seals” into a disc of soft clay, in a clockwise sequence spiraling towards the disc’s center. The Phaistos Disc captured the imagination of amateur and professional archeologists, and many attempts have been made to decipher the code behind the disc’s signs. While it is not clear that it is a script, most attempted decipherments assume that it is; most additionally assume a syllabary, others an alphabet or logography. Attempts at decipherment are generally thought to be unlikely to succeed unless more examples of the signs are found, as it is generally agreed that there is not enough context available for a meaningful analysis.
    Links: Top Ten Unsolved Codes, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phaistos_Disc,
  2. Knossos Palace Bull’s Head

    This is a Serpentine rhyton (drinking vessel) in the form of a bull’s head. It was made out of steatite with gold-plated horns (now restored), from the Little Palace at Knossos, Crete. It currently resides in the Archaeological Museum, Iráklion, Crete.
    Links: Palaces, Top Ten European Palaceshttp://www.flickr.com/photos/filipdeblois/2739766236/,
  3. Bull-Leaping Fresco, Court of the Stone Spout

    Description:
    Links: Top Ten Frescos, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minoan_civilization,
  4. Griffin Couchant Facing Throne

    Description:
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minoan_civilization,
  5. Snake Goddess or Priestess Performing a Ritual

    Snake Goddess, indicates figurines of a woman holding a snake in each hand found during excavation of Minoan archaeological sites in Crete dating from approximately 1,600 BC. It seems that the two elegant idols found in Knossos represented goddesses and by implication, the term ‘snake goddess’ also describes the chthonic deity depicted. Little more is known about her identity apart from that gained from the figurines. These idols were found only in house sanctuaries, where the snake appears as “the snake of the household,” and they are probably related with the Paleolithic tradition regarding women and domesticity. Evans tentatively linked the snake goddess with the Egyptian snake goddess Wadjet.
    Links: Top Ten Godesess, Top Ten Snakes, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Snake_Goddess,
  6. Prince of the Lilies, Knossos Palace (2000 – 1400 BC)

    This is a handmade solid bronze statue of the Prince of the Lilies from the Minoan Palace, Knossos.
    Links: Palaces, Top Ten European Palaces,
  7. Three Queens Fresco

    Description:
    Links: Top Ten Frescos, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minoan_civilization,
  8. Prince of Lilies or Priest-King Relief

    “Prince of lilies” or “Priest-king Relief,” is a plaster relief at the end of the Corridor of Processions, restored by Gilliéron, believed by Arthur Evans to be a priest-king, wearing a crown with peacock feathers and a necklace with lilies on it, leading an unseen animal to sacrifice.
    Links: Relieves and Petroglyphs, Top Ten European Relieves, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minoan_civilization,
  9. Marine Style Vase (1500 BC)

    Description:
    Links: Top Ten Vases,
  10. Octupus Vase (1500 BC), Spouted Vessel (2100-1700BC)

    Description:
    Links: Top Ten Vases, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minoan_civilization,
  11. Fresco of Children Boxing

    Description:
    Links: Top Ten Boxers, Top Ten Heavyweight Boxers, Top 100 Paintings, Top 100 European Paintingshttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minoan_civilization,
  12. Frescos

    Description:
    Links: Top Ten Frescos, Top 100 Paintings, Top 100 European Paintings,
  13. The Bull Leaper

    Description:
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minoan_civilization,
  14. Links: Artifacts, Top Ten European Artifacts, Top Ten Archaeologists, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minoan_civilization,