IN MORE trusting times, a visit to Greece completed the education of any eager teenager who had spent schooldays labouring over dry classical texts. A slow train through Yugo-slavia or an odyssey on the Brindisi ferry preceded that magical moment in the National Museum at Athens when you beheld – carelessly displayed in a dusty glass case – the crinkled features of a long-dead king, imprinted on a thin disc of gold. A small card informed the viewer that Heinrich Schliemann, the German archaeologist, had found this treasure in In excitement he telegraphed the King of Greece: “I have gazed on the face of Agamemnon,” he is supposed to have said. Mythology, however, proved as powerful in the 19th century as in the dim age of Homer. The Mask of Agamemnon, like so many other of Schliemann’s finds, is a controversial object.
Scions of Agamemnon: Who Were the Mycenaeans?
In recent years, both Sarah and I had heard some unflattering things about the famed city, named after the Goddess of Wisdom, following economic hardships that have hit Greece. As with most Mediterranean cities, Athens’s streets are dotted with cats and culture. Similar to Rome, Athens is a city you can wander around and come upon breathtaking architectural marvels without trying. Unlike Rome, Athens appeared to be a more peaceful and less crowded city.
While roaming we almost always found other nomads to strike up a conversation with and not once did we feel the need to guard our handbags.
A gold burial mask dating from ca. the ‘s BCE which was found, according to of Homeric epics and believed that this was the burial mask of Agamemnon.
The National Archaeological Museum of Athens showcases a very rich collection of Ancient Greek art that is a perfect introduction to any trip to Greece. The richness of the collections a thorough visit will take you about four hours and the extent of interesting written information can be overwhelming so we selected some masterpieces for you in this article. When Heinrich Schliemann discovered Mycenae in after discovering Troy — the back then thought mythical cities of the Iliad by Homer — he uncovered the biggest treasure ever found back then.
The Mycenaean civilization is one of the great civilizations that developed in the Aegean. The Mask of Agamemnon is one of the gold masterpieces dug out by Schliemann in the royal tombs of Mycenae dating back to the 16th century BC. In total more than 20 kilograms of gold worked as delicate death-masks, cups, jewelry and more was found by the amateur archaeologist. After you check out the Mask of Agamemnon , make sure to take a look at the bronze daggers with inlaid scenes of lion hunts.
When most of the Ancient Greek art comes to us in monochrome, the colors of wall paintings are still vivid. Originating from Minoan Crete where the murals were reserved for palace architecture, this art form spread to palatial constructions in mainland Greece. If Knossos in Crete is where the murals can be admired in the ancient palaces, the archaeological museum of Athens showcases wall paintings found in the Acropolis of Mycenae dating back to the 13 th century BC.
The Mycenean lady invites us to attend a solemn moment when she accepts a necklace as a gift. The details of her hairstyle and fineness of her jewelry give her status. Colors were obtained from metal oxides and applied onto a wet plaster surface. Why does it matter?
Goldmask of Agamemnon
It may never be possible to prove conclusively that the mask is fake, genuine, or a pastiche; most scholars we queried thought it genuine. While the National Archaeological Museum in Athens has been reluctant to test the mask, there are a number of procedures available to determine authenticity in addition to that outlined by Traill. The simplest and least damaging is X-ray fluorescence, which could reveal whether or not the gold was alloyed with other metals.
Minoan and Mycenaean gold, when mined or panned, was typically composed of between five and 30 percent silver.
Aug 18, – Golden mask of agamemnon at the national archaeological Dating: III century B. The National Bardo Museum Glass Pendants, Glass Beads.
The Mycenean Acropolis dominates the surrounding area; on the top was the palace, the focus of the public life of the king; Mycenae, Greece. From the port of Nafplio we drove inland about one-half hour to the ruins of the Mycenean Acropolis. Mycenae was the home of King Agamemnon and his wife, Clytemnestra, whose story is part of the Trojan War epic poems written by Homer in the Illiad and the Odyssey ; they were real people, not mythological figures, and their royal tombs are located in Mycenae.
The site is located 90 kilometers 56 miles southwest from Athens. The excavations begun in by Heinrich Schliemann, which still continue today , have demonstrated that the site was inhabited already in the 3 rd millennium B. This dynasty imposed itself on the other local rulers in the Peloponnese, mainland Greece and the Aegean, as far afield as Minoan Crete, and [Agamemnon] led the Greek expedition against Troy.
Mask of Agamemnon
Mycenae in the northeast Peloponnese was the main fortified site of contemporary Greek civilisation at the end of the Bronze Age around BC , from which the era now takes its name. By the classical era this was a remote and insignificant hilltop overlooking the plain of Argos, the major local urban centre and state. Listen Now.
The Mask of Agamemnon. As later dating would demonstrate, the mask did, indeed, belong to a Mycenaean king, but to one who had died circa to .
Gold death-mask known as the “Mask of Agamemnon”. This mask depicts the imposing face of a bearded noble man. The artifact is a funeral mask made in gold, and was found over the face of a body located in a burial shaft, designated Grave V, at the site “Grave Circle A, Mycenae”. Schliemann believed that he had discovered the body of the legendary Greek leader Agamemnon, but modern archaeological research suggests that the mask is from — BC, earlier than the life of Agamemnon, as tradition regards it.
The mask is currently displayed in the National Archaeological Museum in Athens. Mythical legends make him the king of Mycenae or Argos, thought to be different names for the same area. Upon Agamemnon’s return from Troy, he was murdered according to the oldest surviving account, Odyssey In old versions of the story, the scene of the murder, when it is specified, is usually the house of Aegisthus, who has not taken up residence in Agamemnon’s palace, and it involves an ambush and the deaths of Agamemnon’s followers too.
Mask of Agamemnon
Reference Condition: New product. Add to cart. The minimum purchase order quantity for the product is 1. Add to compare. The mask is a gold funeral mask, and was found over the face of a body located in a burial shaft grave V.
There are over 11, exhibits dating as far back as the Neolithic period through to late National Archaeological Museum of Athens Mask of Agamemnon.
Among the more visible forms of historical research going on today are those relating to archaeology. The glamour of digging for buried treasure, a notion fostered by decades of movies like The Mummy Returns , could not be further from the gritty truth. Archaeology is sweaty, filthy, tedious, back-breaking work—and in the field, an occupation rarely practiced in the vicinity of functioning bathrooms—nor are jewels and treasure the objects uncovered by most archaeologists today.
Rather, the micro-analysis of pollen and traces of DNA are the sort of “gold” they seek. But that’s not the way the general populace sees the field. To most people, archaeology is that rare academic field which holds out the promise of romance, adventure and riches. It opens with the hero exploring a cave full of gold and jewel-encrusted statuary and, when he moves something, the whole place falls apart.
Anyone with the slightest awareness of archaeology should be horrified. My own reaction, when I first saw the scene, was “That man just destroyed the entire site! And he didn’t even photograph it. He should not get tenure!
338 Mycenae – Grave Circle A
There are loos downstairs and a nice shady courtyard. Good shop. You need time and energy to do this justice but here are my favourites, in chronological order:. The frescoes from Tyrins are a fragment of the vivid wall paintings which decorated the Palaces. Look out for the not very complete boar’s tooth helmet, no.
Mask of Agamemnon. gold funerary mask claimed by Schliemann to have been discovered in one of the Shaft Graves at Mycenae the Homeric hero, although they actually date to several hundred years before the supposed era of the Trojan.
Heinrich Schliemann, a German businessman-turned-archeologist had some very important finds between with his excavations in Turkey. With the discovery of the mask there have been numerous controversies over the authenticity of the mask was it truly from the time of Agamemnon or was it actually from earlier around BCE? However, due to modern research on the mask it has been dated to an era much before the life and reign of Agamemnon, 7 and therefore cannot be used as proof for the Trojan War.
The Mask Of Agamemnon was a funeral mask made of gold placed on the face of a dead body in a burial place in Mycenae. But with the date and authenticity errors made by Schliemann the question of a Troy connection is again at large and raises questions on the legitimacy of his findings. For if these artifacts were actually found at Mycenae or if they were placed in the shaft graves to give Schliemann credit for finding something that he did not.
A brief exploration of neurological art history
The German archaeologist, Heinrich Schliemann is perhaps one of the luckiest archaeologists in history. His discovery of the Mask of Agamemnon was not his first, but second remarkable discovery. Though there is debate if Schliemann ever reached his second goal, he certainly made another impressive find in the process – the ‘Mask of Agamemnon. Less well-known, may be his subsequent excavation in Mycenae, Greece. However, it was here that he made another stunning discovery, a golden death mask. Portrait of Heinrich Schliemann Wikimedia Commons.
The Mask of Agamemnon is an artifact discovered at Mycenae in Later dating however placed the mask to BCE, about three.
Death masks may be mementos of the dead, or be used for creation of portraits. It is sometimes possible to identify portraits that have been painted from death masks, because of the characteristic slight distortions of the features caused by the weight of the plaster during the making of the mold. In other cultures a death mask may be a funeral mask, an image placed on the face of the deceased before burial rites, and normally buried with them.
In some European countries, it was common for death masks to be used as part of the effigy of the deceased, displayed at state funerals; the coffin portrait was an alternative. Mourning portraits were also painted, showing the subject lying in repose. During the 18th and 19th centuries masks were also used to permanently record the features of unknown corpses for purposes of identification. This function was later replaced by post-mortem photography.
In the cases of people whose faces were damaged by their death, it was common to take casts of their hands.
The Grave Circles. The Fortifications. The Cult Centre. The Tholos Tombs.
Agamemnon and the Beehive (Tholos): (Pictured: ‘Mask of Agamemnon’; – BC; For this dating mask probably could belong to king Lynceus.
Back to Illustrated Sites of Greece. Lion Gate. Grave Circles. King’s Megaron. Clytemnestra’s Tomb. Treasury of Atreus. Lion Tomb. J’s Illustrated Grave Circles at Mycenae. It contains 6 shaft graves, which contained 19 bodies: 9 men, 8 women, 2 children. Five of these Royal Graves were discovered with their embalmed bodies and grave goods intact by Schliemann the last was discovered by a Greek archaeologist named Stamatakis and their finds nearly fill the main gallery of the National Archaeological Museum in Athens.
Note the Cyclopean Wall behind the circle.
Look What We Found: Death Mask of Agamemnon
In an impressive modern edifice that was unveiled as recently as is kept an engaging collection of artefacts covering much more than just the famous Mycenaean era. Items from the latter feature strongly, albeit in some instances being replicas of the famed originals that are on display in the National Museum. One such is the so-called golden death mask of Agamemnon, probably one of the most famous pieces from all antiquity.
of artifacts dating back to BC. Some of the highlights of the museum include the Mask of Agamemnon, Santorini frescoes, and The Artemision Poseidon.
The Mask of Agamemnon. Ancient Origins. Few archaeologists have ever been as lucky as Heinrich Schliemann. After his accomplishment of excavating and proving the existence of ancient Troy, he captured lightning in a bottle once more, this time in mainland Greece, where he found what came to be known as the Mask of Agamemnon — the king who led the Greeks against Troy. It came about in , when Schliemann went digging in the royal cemetery near the Lion Gate, the entrance to the citadel of Mycenae in southern Greece.
In one of the graves, he found a funeral mask covered in gold, which he attributed to the legendary king from the Iliad. However, as with his finds in Troy, Schliemann got the broad outlines right, but jumped the gun when it came to the details. As later dating would demonstrate, the mask did, indeed, belong to a Mycenaean king, but to one who had died circa to BC — two and a half to three centuries before the events of the Trojan War.
The name stuck, however, and the artifact is still commonly referred to as the Mask of Agamemnon. Ancient Origins