This is the Minoan trademark: columns that taper down at the bottom.
You always reach a point where you're just done with a country, like you've wrapped it all up and are ready to move on. Today that best explains how I've felt about Greece for a couple of days now. Yes, I enjoy the new places and sites, but I'm sick of classical architecture and ruined palaces. I need pyramids and the tombs of pharaohs now! And if I have to eat another moussaka I might throw up. I need to go to Egypt!
That being said, today was a nice, basic day, travelling around my last few sites. Started in the morning with the famous Palace of Knossos, which is about a 15 min. bus ride from Iraklio, and is really the entire reason I came to Crete in the first place. This was probably the greatest Minoan city, and is so interesting today because of the fevered imagination of Sir Arthur Evans, who found the palace complex in the early 1900s, and actually rebuilt entire sections of it based partly off history, and largely off what he wished it had looked like. This is one of the only archeological sites where the remains have actually been reassembled. Nice because
These are reproductions... and where Evans thought they most likely were located.
you appreciate the true awesomeness of certain places, but also makes you oddly suspicious - is this actually what it looked like? Most archeologists today are at odds with Evans' rebuilding of Knossos.
The Minoans also were an absolutely fascinating group of people, mainly because they are so mysterious. It was Evans who named them after King Minos, the mythical King of Crete. Up until that point they existed more in legend than in reality. This all occurred between roughly 3400-2100 BC. Then, equally as fascinating, the Minoans just simply vanished from the pages of history, and people to this day really have no idea what ultimately led to their downfall. A huge blow was the volcanic eruption on Santorini in the 1400s BC, which caused a massive tsunami that took out most of their major cities. Their written language is also a mystery.
Spent most of the day at the palace and then saw wonderful Minoan finds at the museum back in Iraklio. Almost as good as the museum in Athens. Have now, though, mentally switched gears to Egypt, and am thinking in Egyptian Pounds and my flight to Cairo tomorrow. Goodbye Greece.
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