To begin the new series, we are starting at the city of Pylos, from where the characters resume their search for the sacred relics of the Mother Goddess.
The ancient site of Pylos was a Mycenaean city in southern Greece, established in the bronze-age, circa 1,300 BCE. Its location on the western coast in the Peloponnese, facing the Ionian Sea and the Italian coast, enabled the city to become a trading port.
According to mythology, a man called Pylas, who came from Megara, settled in the ancient area of Messenia and was later expelled by Neleus. Neleus and a group of Pelasgians came from Iolcos in Thessaly, once home to Jason, as in ‘Jason and the Argonauts.’ Pelias, Neleus’ brother, exiled him for some reason, (none has been given in any of the references used or searched) and hence he and the Pelasgians head for Messenia and make Pylos their home. King Nestor was one of Neleus’ son.
In 1939, archaeologist Carl Blegen, arrives at the site in search for the famous city of Pylos and in particular, Nestor’s palace. During his excavations, he uncovers a vast site on the hilltop where evidence of extensive structures emerge and shards of Mycenaean pottery. In his investigation, Blegen discovers the building/s had been occupied during the era of the Trojan War, circa 1,300 BCE. He also uncovered numerous tablets written in Linear B, a script used by the Myceneans, an adaptation of Linear A, which was first invented by the Minoans.
Links between Homer’s Iliad and the tablets provided enough evidence for Blegen to suggest Pylos was indeed the city referred to by Homer.
The contingent from Pylos came from there and from lovely Arene; from Thryon, where the River Alpheus is forded; from handsome Aepy; from Cyparisseis, Amphigeneia, Pteleus and Helos…
The other interesting feature about Mycenaean palaces was how much they resembled Minoan palaces. The Minoans were a seafaring power with extensive trading partners. To read more, click here to go to blog post. Following the decline of the Minoan civilisation, Mycenaean artwork, architecture, jewellery, female deities and script showed a strong Minoan influence. There is an interesting article by NY Times that discusses the connection between the Minoans and Mycenaeans.
FYI: I did write a blog post some years ago regarding Pylos as it was the last location mentioned in Search for the Golden Serpent. Read more
Thank you for your continued support and as always, I look forward to your comments and will respond.
Historical fiction novelist and a secondary teacher, Luciana Cavallaro, burnt out but not done… yet. Still hanging on.
Bury, J.B. and Meiggs, R. (1975). A history of Greece. Palgrave. Hampshire. pp31-33
The Pylos Palace Mycenaean Civilisation http://www.greek-thesaurus.gr/Mycenaean-Pylos-Palace.html