Tag Archive: architecture



5 more putative proto-Greek or pre-Greek Minoan Linear A words, MI-MU & 1 is a winner!

minoan-linear-words-mi-mu-of-possible-proto-greek-origin

The preceding table lists 5 more  putative proto-Greek or pre-Greek Minoan Linear A words from MI-MU.  Of these 5, [3] mita = “minth”, is by far the most compelling because it is identical to the Mycenaean Linear B word, right down to orthography. Both words may be either proto-Greek or part of the pre-Greek substratum. The next most convincing decipherment is [1] mini, which very likely means “month”, and which is probably proto-Greek or proto-Mycenaean. [4] muko = “recesss/corner”  also makes quite a lot of sense, in view of the fact that it appears to be an architectural term. Such terms are relatively common in Mycenaean Linear B; so it stands to reason that they may also be so in Minoan Linear A.  [5] musaja might possibly mean “shut/closed”, if it is an adjective, but this is a bit of stretch.


3 impressive photos of the Bull Fresco Portico Knossos, taken by Richard while he was there on May 1 2012:

bull-fresco-portico-knossos-b

bull-fresco-portico-knossos-c

bull-fresco-portico-knossos-a

PINTEREST boards of interest related to Minoan Linear A & Mycenaean Linear B (NEWEST Boards):

This is a reasonably comprehensive directory of PINTEREST boards of interest related to Minoan Linear A & Mycenaean Linear B. To visit each board, simply CLICK on its banner, and sign up, if you like: 

NEWEST BOARDS:

1900 – 1600 BC Ancient Greek/Minoan Pottery (Click BANNER to visit):

1900-1600 BC
Ancient Mycenaean Culture

ancient mycenaean culture

Bronze Age

Bronze Age
Civiltà egea
 
civilita egea
Homer’s Bronze Age
 
Homer's Bronze Aage
Mediterraneo

Mediterraneo
Minoan Fashion

Minoan fashion

Minoans

Minoans
Mycenae

Mycenae
Micenic_bronze age

Micenic bronze age

Richard Vallance — Linear Scripts, Superhero

PINTEREST superhero



This is a beautifully illustrated Mycenaean Linear B tablet on 5 carpenters who owe the tax collector:

KN 826 A c 11 and tax collection

The illustrations at the top are (left) several designs for Minoan houses (Knossos). Notice that many of them are 3 stories high, which is unusual for the ancient world, except for Rome, with its shabby multi-storied insulae (islands) or apartment buildings, which frequently collapsed. Such can scarcely be said of the Minoan houses, which were built to withstand earthquakes. You can see this for yourself from the top left picture, where the windows in the last 2 houses on the bottom display the heavy wooden beams, both vertical and horizontal, used to reinforce the windows. A cute clay model of a Minoan house at Knossos appears at the top right. The Minoans at Knossos were just as fussy about their typical beautifully fluted Minoan columns and sturdily reinforced doors, as can clearly be seen in these two photos I took when I was in Knossos on May 2, 2012:

Knossos, Third Palace, Late Minoan IIIb ca. 1450 BCE reinforced windows and doors

Knossos, Third Palace, Late Minoan IIIb ca. 1450 BCE fluted columns

I am particularly impressed by the text in Mycenaean Greek, which is easily rendered into Archaic Greek.


Comprehensive Architectural Lexicon, Knossos & Mycenae (Part B):

Architectural Lexicon Knossos and Mycenae Part B

Part B of our architectural lexicon in Linear B presents only a few little problems. First of all, pokironuka = decorated with different studs, would appear to refer to studs which are jutting ornamentations on buildings, but I cannot be sure of this. Ponikiyo is almost always translated as palm tree, but I suspect it also means Phoenician, i.e. an architectural style. For the three * asterisked notes, see the lexicon above. Just one more point on samara. Samara is an actual ancient city. One Linear B lexicon defines it as points, but I have not the faintest idea what that is supposed to mean. The alternative meaning is monuments, which is completely acceptable. But I have added the additional signification, burial mounds, because these appear in some numbers at Mycenae alone.


Comprehensive Architectural Lexicon, Knossos & Mycenae (Part A):

Architectural Lexicon Knossos and Mycenae

Since I have been posting scores of photos of the magnificent Third Palace of Knossos, Late Minoan IIIb (ca. 1450 BCE), I have decided to compile an Architectural Lexicon in 2 parts. This is the first. The vocabulary is relatively straightforward, with a few minor exceptions:
1 Decorated with spirals. The Minoans at Knossos and the Mycenaeans went crazy decorating many of their lovely frescoes and their walls with spirals.
2 Bathtub. You might be wondering, why on earth would I add this word?... because bathtubs were an integral part of room architecture, i.e. of the bathroom. The people of Knossos in particular were very clean. They even had an advanced hydraulics driven piping and drainage system, the likes of which was never again repeated until ancient Rome. And the Romans, unlike the Minoans at Knossos, made the terrible mistake of constructing their pipes of lead, leading to widespread lead poisoning. The Minoans used ceramics... nice and clean. Clever. No surprise there.
3 Mantles! Isn’t that what people wear? Well, yes, but they could also be used to decorate the top of windows, I imagine. Or maybe it is just my imagination. Correct me if I am wrong.
4 The word erepato, which  is the equivalent of the Homeric Greek elefantos never means ivory either in Mycenaean or in Homeric Greek!
5 Crocus? - of course! ... used all over the place in the lovely frescoes!
6 Circles were likewise universal on the building friezes. And with good reason. They are geometrically perfect, a typically Greek characteristic.


Knossos building with perfect circular rosettes on its frieze!

More of the same!


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Knossos building with perfect circular rosettes on its frieze!

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This building is remarkable for the typically Greek (or if you prefer, Minoan) simplicity of its architecture. What really struck me while I was visiting Knossos on the afternoon of May 2 2012 was that the circular rosettes on its frieze are perfectly circular, each one exactly identical to the next. It seems the Greeks inherited the mania for geometric simplicity fro their forbears, the Minoans. 

DSCN5025

More photos follow in the next post. 


More photos of the Third Palace, Knossos, Late Minoan III (ca. 1450 BCE), general views from the net:

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ancientpalacec

ancientpalacedacomplex874

 

ancientpalacedacomplexdbFLWright

versus photos of ancient Chinese architecture:

ancient China a

Traditional-Chinese-Architecture-Ancient-Buildings-Tianning-Temple-at-Changzhou-City-in-Jiangsu-Province-china

 


Third Palace, Knossos, Late Minoan III (ca. 1450 BCE), general views from the net:

In this post and the next two, you can see several illustrations and paintings of the ancient palace and city of Knossos in its full glory in the Late Minoan III period (ca. 1450 BCE).

AATIArthurEveans834

ancientpalaceaa834

ancientpalaceab834

 

Notice in this beautiful painting of ancient Knossos (population ca. 55,000, a huge city for the ancient world) the arches beneath the causeway leading to the city. And we thought arches were a Roman invention!

What is so remarkable about Middle and Late Minoan architecture is that it looks so modern, even to us in the twenty-first century. The architecture is simple and streamlined, no extravagant frills. This sets Knossos in stark contrast to practically every other ancient civilization, except Classical Athenian (the acropolis and Parthenon, ca. 430-400 BCE). Almost all other ancient civilizations went in for the extravagant and the excessive, much like Baroque architecture in the seventeenth century AD, all of which I cannot abide. In order to set the stark contrast between Minoan and Mycenaean architecture and that of Persepolis and ancient China, for instance, I am also including photos from the latter civilizations. The architecture of Persepolis is particularly gaudy and distasteful to me.

Persepolis:

persepolisapersepolisb


7 more photos from Vienna (2 in both colour & B&W), from our vocation in Europe, June 2015: Click on each photo to ENLARGE: 

caryatids

caryatidsb&w

coat of arms

Doric

Doric B&W

Museum district a

triumphandjustice

Schoenbrunn Palace Eagles on Guard

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart star



Great Photos to Welcome us back home to Canada from our grand tour of central Europe!

After spending almost a whole month in Europe (25 days), starting first with Budapest, Hungary for 3 days, then continuing on to Vienna, Austria for 5 days, thence to Prague, the Czech Republic for a week, and finally on to Warsaw, Poland for our last 9 days, we are finally back home here in Canada, though as you can all well imagine, not without mixed emotions.  It goes without saying that this was such an exciting vacation, visiting so many astonishingly beautiful locales, we must both miss Europe terribly, all  the more so considering that we added side trips to 3 more magnificent cities, Salzburg and Krakow for Louis-Dominique and Gdansk for myself. What a totally unanticipated and unimaginably rewarding dream come true! Words simply cannot express our profound joy at visiting so many famous European cities, all of which date from the cradle of European, hence, Western, civilization.

While even photos cannot adequately express the profound spiritual impact these amazing venues had on us, they can at least offer you all a glimmer of the fantastic experiences that await you should you ever decide to do a grand tour of central & Eastern Europe yourself. Beginning with this post, I shall be posting 4 of my finest photos for each of the 6 cities we visited, from the approx. 6,000 (!) I took during our voyage. You are going to love them!

So let us start with Budapest, Hungary: Click each photo to ENLARGE it:

1. Budapest Parliament Florentine cupola:
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2. Budapest Parliament by night:
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3. Saint Matthias church with location and detail of weather vane:
StMatthias
4. Budapest Museum frieze:
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5. Budapest cathedral frieze: Ego sum via veritas et vita = I am the way, the truth and the life.
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6. Danube River with Budapest Chain Bridge from our night cruise boat:
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Richard 


Knossos Palace – Architecture – Geometric, Circular – Minoan Columns  (Click to ENLARGE):

Knossosgeometriccircularmotifs

 

Photo taken at Knossos, May 2 2012

 


Palace of Knossos, Architecture –  Earthquake-resistant (Click to ENLARGE each photo):

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Knossos masonry window & door frames

Knossos window frames & stairwell to second story

Photos taken by yours truly on May 2, 2012 at Knossos.


Knossos: the magnificent Queen’s Megaron (Late Minoan III) [Click to ENLARGE]:

Knossos New Palace stairwells & Queen's Megaron

In Linear B, WANAKATERO literally means “the house of the King or Queen” and in this case, the Linear B title refers to “the  new palace of the Queen”, which is, I can assure you, a masterpiece of Minoan architecture at its zenith.  This is the only building which has been completely restored from the ruins of the Last Palace (Late Minoan III ca. 1450 BCE).

 

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