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ENG:Knossos, currently refers to the main Bronze Age archaeological site at Heraklion, a modern port city on the north central coast of Crete. Heraklion was formerly called Candia after the Saracen name for the place, Kandaiki, meaning the moat that was built around the then new settlement for defence. Kandaiki became Byzantine Chandax.The name, Knossos, survives from ancient Greek references to the major city of Crete. The identification of Knossos with the Bronze Age site is supported by tradition and by the Roman coins that were scattered over the fields surrounding the pre-excavation site, then a large mound named Kephala Hill, elevation 85 m from current sea level. Many of them were inscribed with Knosion or Knos on the obverse and an image of a Minotaur or Labyrinth on the reverse, both symbols deriving from the myth of King Minos, supposed to have reigned from Knossos.The coins came from the Roman settlement of Colonia Julia Nobilis Cnossus, a Roman colony placed just to the north of, and politically including, Kephala. The Romans believed they had colonized Knossos.After excavation, the discovery of the Linear B tablets, and the decipherment of Linear B by Michael Ventris, the identification was confirmed by the reference to an administrative center, ko-no-so, Mycenaean Greek Knosos, undoubtedly the palace complex. The palace was built over a Neolithic town. During the Bronze Age, the town surrounded the hill on which the palace was built.The palace was excavated and partially restored under the direction of Arthur Evans in the earliest years of the 20th century. Its size far exceeded his original expectations, as did the discovery of two ancient scripts, which he termed Linear A and Linear B, to distinguish their writing from the pictographs also present. From the layering of the palace Evans developed de novo an archaeological concept of the civilization that used it, which he called Minoan, following the pre-existing custom of labelling all objects from the location Minoan.The palace complex is the largest Bronze Age archaeological site on Crete. It was undoubtedly the ceremonial and political centre of the Minoan civilization and culture. It appears as a maze of workrooms, living spaces, and storerooms close to a central square. An approximate graphic view of some aspects of Cretan life in the Bronze Age is provided by restorations of the palace's indoor and outdoor murals, as it is also by the decorative motifs of the pottery and the insignia on the seals and sealings.he palace was abandoned at some unknown time at the end of the Late Bronze Age, ca. 1380–1100 BC.The occasion is not known for certain, but one of the many disasters that befell the palace is generally put forward. The abandoning population were probably Mycenaean Greeks, who had earlier occupied the city-state, and were using Linear B as its administrative script, as opposed to Linear A, the previous administrative script. The hill was never again a settlement or civic site, although squatters may have used it for a time.Except for periods of abandonment, other cities were founded in the immediate vicinity, such as the Roman colony, and a Hellenistic Greek precedent. The population shifted to the new town of Chandax during the 9th century AD. By the 13th century, it was called Makruteikhos 'Long Wall'; the bishops of Gortyn continued to call themselves Bishops of Knossos until the 19th century.Today, the name is used only for the archaeological site now situated in the expanding suburbs of Heraklion.The palace also includes the Minoan column, a structure notably different from other Greek columns. Unlike the stone columns that are characteristic of other Greek architecture, the Minoan column was constructed from the trunk of a cypress tree, common to the Mediterranean. While most Greek columns are smaller at the top and wider at the bottom to create the illusion of greater height, the Minoan columns are smaller at the bottom and wider at the top, a result of inverting the cypress trunk to prevent sprouting once in place.The columns at the Palace of Minos were painted red and mounted on stone bases with round, pillow-like capitals.

GR:Το μινωϊκό ανάκτορο είναι ο κύριος επισκέψιμος χώρος της Κνωσού, σημαντικής πόλης κατά την αρχαιότητα, με συνεχή ζωή από τα νεολιθικά χρόνια έως τον 5ο αι. μ.Χ. Είναι χτισμένο στο λόφο της Κεφάλας, με εύκολη πρόσβαση στη θάλασσα αλλά και στο εσωτερικό της Κρήτης. Κατά την παράδοση, υπήρξε η έδρα του σοφού βασιλιά Μίνωα. Συναρπαστικοί μύθοι, του Λαβύρινθου με το Μινώταυρο και του Δαίδαλου με τον Ίκαρο, συνδέονται με το ανάκτορο της Κνωσού.Οι πρώτες ανασκαφές έγιναν το 1878 από τον Ηρακλειώτη Μίνωα Καλοκαιρινό. Ακολούθησαν οι ανασκαφές που διεξήγαγε ο Αγγλος Sir Άρθουρ Έβανς (1900-1913 και 1922-1930) και που αποκάλυψαν ολόκληρο το ανάκτορο.
Τα παλαιότερα ίχνη κατοίκησης στο χώρο του ανακτόρου ανάγονται στη νεολιθική εποχή. Η κατοίκηση συνεχίζεται στην προανακτορική περίοδo, στο τέλος της οποίας ο χώρος ισοπεδώνεται για την ανέγερση ενός μεγάλου ανακτόρου. Το πρώτο αυτό ανάκτορο καταστρέφεται, πιθανότατα από σεισμό, το 1700 π.Χ. περίπου. Δεύτερο, μεγαλοπρεπέστερο ανάκτορο ανεγείρεται πάνω στα ερείπια του παλαιού. Μετά από μερική καταστροφή γύρω στο 1450 π.Χ.,οι Μυκηναίοι εγκαθίστανται στην Κνωσό. Το ανάκτορο καταστρέφεται οριστικά περί το 1350 π.Χ. από μεγάλη πυρκαγιά. Ο χώρος που καλύπτει ξανακατοικείται από την ύστερη μυκηναϊκή περίοδο μέχρι τα ρωμαϊκά χρόνια.

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Additional Photos by Chris Vekris (chrisvek) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 793 W: 11 N: 1384] (7003)
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