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Crete's Archaeological Museum of Herakleion Page Three

Room 4

bull rhytonAlso from Middle Minoan period, but more specifically, from the New Palace period (1700-1450 B.C.) after rebuilding of palaces following destructions. New decorative styles on Kamares pottery during this period with dark colors on a lighter background and often marine motifs. Jug of Reeds a good example.

snake goddessSnake Goddess figurines (from Palace of Knossos). Among items connected with a snake cult, some of which may have actually been containers for snakes, which were symbols of immortality for the Minoans. Thin-waisted goddess with exposed breasts above the bodice, flounced skirt with apron, arms upraised with snakes coiling around them, presumed to be priestesses performing sacred rituals. Faience sculptures (decorated earthenware and porcelain). 17th-16th centuries B.C.

Bull's head Rhyton Libation vessel carved from a block of black steatite in the shape of bull's head. Details incised, with fine curls on head, very life-like eyes inlaid painted rock-crystal and jasper; muzzle inlaid white shell mother-of-pearl; horns (restored) of gilded wood. Exp. of fine lapidary wkmanship . 17-15th B.C. from the Little Palace of Knossos.

Other animal heads as well including white limestone head of a lioness and a leopard's-head axe from Malia. Other animal sculptures include an ivory acrobat assumed to be a bull-leaper (connected with Minoan bull cult) and a faience relief of the wild goat-the Kri-kri-suckling her calf.

There are also a Gaming Board from the 'Corridor of the Draughtsboard' (Knossos) of ivory, crystal and gold, blue paste, silver leaf and ivory fragments; two small cups with Linear A inscriptions written with cuttlefish ink; and a collection of mostly bronze tools and weapons decorated with semi-precious stones, ivory, and gold.

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