Mycenae (2nd century B.C.)

Mycenae (2nd century B.C.)

The city with advanced culture was the first settlement in history to have a citadel.

History

Keywords

Mycenae, Mycenaean civilisation, citadel, Lion Gate, World Heritage, Greece, Peloponnese, Heinrich Schliemann, Acropolis, archeology, tholos, Greek, civilization, building, edifice, Crete, palace, defensive wall, Hellas, Agamemnon, history, antiquity, center

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Questions

  • Who conquered Mycenae in the 12th century B.C.?
  • Is the following statement true?\nArcheologists found written clay tablets in the ruins of Mycenae.
  • What does the term "tholos" mean?
  • What happened to the city of Mycenae after the Argives had conquered it in 468 B.C.?
  • Where are "the lions of Mycenae" situated?
  • Which building was the center of economic life in ancient Mycenae?

Scenes

Narration

The antique ruins of Mycenae are located on the Peloponnese Peninsula in Greece. The first settlers arrived in this area in the Neolithic Age. Greek tribes appeared on the peninsula in the Middle Helladic Age, that is, in the 16th century B.C.

Mycenae was built in several stages. The first grave circles were created at the beginning of the 16th century B.C., but certain structures were built much later, in the 13th century B.C. Built on a rocky promontory that could easily be defended, Mycenae was surrounded by what was called the Cyclopean wall, which is very special since it is made of stone blocks placed on top of one another without any binding material. The wall is therefore held together by the sheer weight of the blocks.

The city had more than one entrance. The most famous of these is the Lion Gate constructed between two "ramparts." Its columns and crossbar each weigh around 20 tonnes. The weight on the crossbar is supported by the relieving triangle, which is the forerunner to the arch. This triangle was carved with a relief depicting a pair of lions, hence the name of the gate. The layout of the city is very interesting, since there are clearly separate quarters for the graveyard, the artisans and the nobility. This city is the first settlement in history to have an acropolis. The palace was built at the most defensible location within the citadel constructed on a natural rock.

Mycenae, the city that was long forgotten in the turmoil of thousands of years, and the culture named after her, were discovered in 1876 by the well-known archeologist, Heinrich Schliemann. Today this is one of the most visited antique sites in Greece. This legacy of the mythological king Agamemnon has officially been listed as a World Heritage cultural site since 1999.

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