late helladic


Grave of ‘Griffin Warrior’ at Pylos Could Be a Gateway to Civilizations

Source: New York Times

Archaeologists digging at Pylos, an ancient city on the southwest coast of Greece, have discovered the rich grave of a warrior who was buried at the dawn of European civilization.

He lies with a yardlong bronze sword and a remarkable collection of gold rings, precious jewels and beautifully carved seals. Archaeologists expressed astonishment at the richness of the find and its potential for shedding light on the emergence of the Mycenaean civilization, the lost world of Agamemnon, Nestor, Odysseus and other heroes described in the epics of Homer.

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Mycenaean Carnelian Amygdaloid, Late Helladic III, C. 1375-1250 BC

Engraved with two adorsed heraldic griffins, each standing with its crested and beaked head turned back, the forelegs extended, the hind legs bent, with raised sickle-shaped wings, the tail upraised and coiled into a spiral, a drilled knob for the tassel, a trilobate plant below each monster, another above in between them; the reverse ornamented with three shallow grooves along its length.

Mycenaean Gold Argonaut Bead, Late Helladic II, c. 15th Century BC

The upper surface in repoussé, in the form of an Argonaut, the eyes and tentacles ornamented with granulation, the back plain, with four perforations.