Clytemnestra’s Tomb

No one could ever accuse the Greeks of archeological hybris: this charming hand-painted sign points to two 3300 year old tholos tombs:

Appropriately enough, Heinrich Schliemann’s wife Sophie excavated “Clytemnestra’s Tomb.” The dromos is 65 meters long and a woman’s grave was found in the actual access way. Like the other eight tholos tombs found at Mycenae (none of which were located inside the fortification walls), this one was also probably the final resting place for royalty; all may have been used repeatedly for burials by the ruling elite.

Original bronze dowels show where a fluted column fit against the pillar outside the entrance to the tomb (illustration pending).

The design of this relieving triangle, a Mycenean signature detail designed to absorb structural stress, helps archaeologists date this tomb to about 1300 BC. Note that the lintel block extends beyond the doorway – in fact, it extends all the way around the entire interior, adding a nice decorative touch.

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