The Lions of Mycenae
Trip Start Sep 07, 2008
148Trip End Dec 09, 2008
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The most iconic image of the huge ruins at ancient Mycenae is the Lion's Gate. The lintel stone across the entrance gate is not very strong, so the triangle shape is meant to relieve pressure from the slab. Then the Mycenaeans added a lighter stone with a lion motif. The lions' front paws are resting on Minoan altars, and between them stands a Minoan pillar (which you will remember is thicker at the top than at the bottom), representative of the palace they protect. "Definitely a power statement," Indy said.
The artists who sculpted the Lion's Gate had actually seen real lion because the reliefs are anatomically correct down to the ropy artery running down the lions' legs
We all posed for a picture under the Lion's Gate. Sunshine first took the picture with Groom's big fancy camera, and then with my camera as a backup. We were glad she did, because Groom went to show the picture to a friend later, and accidentally deleted it from his digital memory! The picture was safe in my camera, though, and here it is.
Indy led us through the ruins, and we finished at the Treasury of Atreus, the famous tholos tomb. This tomb is built into the hillside with a triangle corbel over the doorway and a beehive roof beyond. It was gigantic inside. But it didn't really belong to a king of the House of Atreus, because archaeologists believe it was built too late for that.