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Dr J's Audio-Visual Resources for Classics

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Lion Gate

Grave Circles

King's Megaron


Clytemnestra's Tomb

Treasury of Atreus

Lion Tomb



        9501MID.jpg (10486 bytes)

Dr. J's
Illustrated Cistern
at Mycenae

pp39MID.jpg (8442 bytes)Walk toward the light! Beyond the corbelled rock entrance (a triangular space similar to the relieving triangle over the Lion Gate) and a small interior landing, a stairwell cuts 18 meters deep in total darkness. Know where the metal support poles are before plunging ahead!
IMG0101MID.jpg (9009 bytes)In c. 1200 BC this northeast extension to the Mycenean citadel was added to extend its fortification walls to safeguard the water supplied by this underground cistern. Photo shot from atop the Cyclopean wall on the south side of the extension.
IMG0105MID.jpg (11000 bytes)An underground pipeline channeled water from a hillside spring some distance away (note the olive trees thriving even in the heat of August) and the cistern was created to store that water in case of siege or drought.
IMG0104MID.jpg (9237 bytes)The northeast extension also enclosed several Mycenean houses, the foundations of which have been uncovered. Hellenistic remains are visible throughout the site, as well...
IMG0102MID.jpg (9412 bytes)I wonder how many Mycenean goat herders sat atop (more likely against) this very wall in antiquity, listening to the very same tinkling of goat bells filling the air...

copyright 2001 Janice Siegel, All Rights Reserved
send comments to: Janice Siegel (jfsiege@ilstu.edu)

date this page was edited last: 08/02/2005
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