Death cult in Minoan Crete - Archaeological Round Trip

The program of the round trip is planned by Doniert Evely

Option 1

The Minoan Way of Death

The Minoans have left us an impressive array of monuments and objects. And a lot of them have to do with the disposal of the Dead. For some eras, stretching for close to a millennium, we have collected far more from tombs and associated funerary buildings than we have from the houses where they lived and worked. One would have thought therefore that our knowledge was considerable and wide-ranging. It is not. Our comprehension is totally biased to listing the material, and almost equally totally void when it comes to glimpsing the spiritual, the emotional and the intangible.

In fact this sorry state is broadly so for ALL of their social beliefs, faiths and make-up.

AND THEREBY LIES THE DANGER

Archaeology, just like Nature, abhors a vacuum. Horror vacuii writ large indeed. The outcome is that we all strive to manufacture an interpretation... inevitably biased by our own culture, learning, prejudices and interests. This is fine if it is appreciated by all that this is merely an exercise in Informed Guesswork with Footnotes... and if the ideas so generated can be tested. Usually they cannot be.

This trip will not change any of the above. But it intends to introduce you to a wide range of the monuments by day... so at least you are familiar with the myriad, if linked, physical expressions the Minoans developed. And by night, it will explore through lectures and as much discussion as people wish to... some of the avenues of explanation the archaeologists have explored in the attempts to get inside Minoan Heads and Souls.

(A small Reading List can be made available to anyone interested)



Day 1. Orientation

Visit to Knossos Palace and the Archaeological Museum at Heraklion.
Evening talk: an outline of what we will be doing in the next few days. General Q&A.

Day 2.

Archanes – Phornoi: A Condensed Version of Mainstream Minoan Funerary Monuments; Anemospelia. Lunch in Archanes

The Funerary Landscape around Knossos: Gypsadhes, Temple Tomb, Kephala Tholos

Evening Talk: Tombs down the Ages

Day 3.

The Mesara. Prepalatial Tholoi in the landscape where they evolved Trypati (Cemetery and Village), Lunch at Voroi

Voroi Ethnographical Museum

Evening Talk:

Day 4.

Out East... en route to Sitea : Mallia; Sissi; Gournia ... and the town;

Lunch en route; overnight stay in Siteia

Evening Talk:

Day 5.

Achladia, Petras, Aghia Photia and Palaikastro

Home to Heraklion

Free evening

Day 6. Out West

Armenoi, Magarites tholos

Lunch en route

Evening Talk: Pulling it all together

Day 7. Dispersal

Chance to see more of Heraklion Archaeological Museum



Option 2

SHORTER VERSION

Day 1. Orientation

Visit to Knossos Palace and the Archaeological Museum at Heraklion.

Lunch in Herakleion

Evening talk: an outline of what we will be doing in the next few days. General Q&A.

Day 2. Nearby

Archanes – Phornoi: A Condensed Version of Mainstream Minoan Funerary Monuments; Anemospelia.

Lunch in Archanes

Evening Talk: Tombs down the Ages

Day 3. Out and about

Armenoi cemetery

Lunch in Voroi

Some Mesara tholoi

Evening Talk: Beliefs behind Objects.

Day 4. Dispersal

Chance to see more of Heraklion Archaeological Museum



Doniert EVELY

Research Archaeologist

Registered in the UK, resident most of the time in Crete, Greece.

Classics MA from Edinburgh University, Scotland; Diploma and DPhil at Oxford University, England (Minoan Craft Techniques). One-time Curator at Knossos for the British School at Athens (2003-2012). I have made a modest contribution to Bronze-Age Archaeology through articles and books and similar. Mostly I now make my living by facilitating the research of others and contributing to excavation reports. This involves my own writing, also checking that of others; preparing texts and images for all stages of the publication process; working on site and in study seasons. I also have a lengthy connection with guiding and lecturing to English groups resident on or visiting Crete.