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Near the Palace of Nestor

Image result for pylos greece map

Archaeologists digging near the Palace of Nestor, at the southern tip of mainland Greece, have apparently excavated some fascinating contents from a 3,500 year old grave.

"Recently" in that sentence means the spring of 2015.

Three thousand and five hundred years ago means: the time of which Homer tells. The time which was already a distant heroic past to the classical Greeks.

So, what's the new finding? 

For roughly 70 years now, the scholarly consensus has told of the sudden unexplained death of a Minoan civilization on Crete, and the rise of a successor, Mycenaean, civilization. This in turn has suggested invasion and overthrow.

The rich new findings from this grave suggest that there was nothing that dramatic, that there was a period of overlap during which Minoan and Mycenaean worlds existed side  by side, distinct yet trading  and peacefully co-existing.

"In other words," writes the Smithsonian's reporter, Jo Marchant, "it isn’t the Mycenaeans or the Minoans to whom we [westerners] can trace our cultural heritage since 1450 B.C., but rather a blending of the two."


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