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CRETE

A singular labyrinth

According to archaeologist Evans, who discovered it, it was the royal palace, but...

The Minoans, who inhabited Crete about 4000 years ago, brought prestige to their ancient civilization through their trades and their riches.
According to a scientific theory, their civilization was erased by a volcanic eruption which almost entirely destroyed Thina island (Santorini), at a distance of 100 Km.
The Minoan civilization was forgotten, but a legend has been transmitted over the millenniums: the one of king Minos and of his monstrous stepson, half man and half bull, the Minotaur.

At the beginning of the 20th century the ruins of the capital city, Knossos, were found: if we also consider the harbour, it must have been quite large.
But the most sensational discovery was a palace with many floors, also underground ones, and plenty of treasures inside. On the walls fresco paintings pictured dancing girls, bulls, acrobats and sea life scenes.
In the main hall, were the throne was probably laid, the floor was covered with alabaster.
Archaeologists and historians immediately agreed with each other about the fact that that building was a royal palace. But in 1972 a German researcher, Wunderlich, claimed that Knossos palace was not the seat of Minoan kings, but a sepulchre.

What were his theories?
According to Wunderlich the stone silos were tombs, the fresco paintings on the walls symbolized the soul transition to the underworld. Moreover, the palace had been built in a scarcely defendable place and lacked kitchens and stables.
But there are no signs of burials nor mummified corpses; moreover, in 80 years excavations nothing that could made us think of a sepulchre has come to light.
The truth?
For the present it is perhaps still imprisoned under stone heaps.