I have been fortunate to visit Athens twice, and though the second time was just a day trip, I was still excited to spend time there. I first went to Athens in 2004, the year in which the modern Olympics returned to Greece in over a hundred years. There was so much going on and travelling from the airport on the bus into the city, there was rubble, construction and mayhem everywhere. I did wonder whether the Greeks would be ready for the onslaught of athletes and spectators that were soon to arrive on their shores. Speaking with the locals, there was no doubt they’d be ready and on time for the big opening; and they were! It was a spectacular. I wasn’t there for the Olympics, and in fact it was better, as I didn’t need to wait in line to go to venues or places to eat.
To continue with the blog series (that is hiccupping along!) I had begun last year. Click here to have a quick refresher of the infographic I created as an overview of the locations featured in my book The Labyrinthine Journey. In this post, we will be heading to Eleusis, renowned for the ‘mysteries’, and where the legend of Demeter and Persephone was ignited.
For my next serial instalment, I thought it would be interesting to look at the various foods and beverages that was consumed in ancient civilisations. What they ate at home, those who travelled on the sea and over land as my main character, Evan Chronis, does from the Servant of the Gods series.
The Minoans came from somewhere, the question was where? In 2013, examination of the DNA of skeletal remains answered the puzzling enigma that surrounded the origins of the Minoans. Prior to this discovery, Sir Arthur Evans, opined the Minoans had to have come from Egypt and who were exiled from their homeland.
For my next series, I’ll be delving into the world of the Minoans but before I get into this amazing civilisation I’d like to explain why. Many of you following my blog would know back in May, I published a novel called Search for the Golden Serpent. One reviewer wrote:
“This is a tale of a modern-day hero’s adventure through time travel and to ancient sites such as Atlantis, Thebes and Pylos.” Linnea Tanner
In a number posts I’ve mentioned the similarities between Plato’s Atlantis, the island of Thira/Santorini and the Minoans. In my research for my series Servant of the Gods, my focus was on the Atlantean myth. I love researching and looking for information which would help with writing my story. In the course of my sleuthing there has been a myriad of theories put forward as to where Atlantis was but not the fallout for the people. Who were they and what became of them after the destruction of their home?
In the 4th century BCE, Plato wrote his dialogues Timaeus and Critias, and compared the virtues of two cities—Athens and Atlantis. The story of Atlantis originated with Solon, Athenian law maker and his ancestor. Solon, while travelling the Mediterranean world and learning about the laws of the various cities was told the legend by Egyptians at Sais. The descriptions of Atlantis are detailed and give clues as to which civilisation it may refer to and the location. Yet these descriptors are not unique which makes it difficult to pin down precise whereabouts of Atlantis. In this post and those to follow I will draw on Plato’s Critias to extrapolate details which may point to this fabled island.
According to Plato, the island of Atlantis was beyond the Pillars of Herakles and in the Great Ocean. It describes where and how big the island was and why it was referred to as a continent. Perhaps not as big as Australia as an island continent but a significant size.
Why are people fascinated with Atlantis? What is it about this mythical place that has drawn so much attention for over two thousand years? Is it about the people who once inhabited the island with their sophistication and technological advancements? Or is it the total annihilation of a civilisation, wiped out in one cataclysmic event? For me, on a personal level, the legend of Atlantis conjured a lifelong interest in ancient civilisations, and to learn about the rich diversity our world offers. It is why I began to write stories. It sparked my imagination on what happened to these amazing cultures and what can they still teach us today.
It’s hard to believe but the first anniversary of Accursed Women is fast approaching. A lot has happened since 30 November 2013, high and low events. The greatest achievement was the publication of Accursed Women. The book launch was a wonderful success with support from family, friends and people I hadn’t met before. It had a positive vibe and great energy. I was buzzing and so was the room full of guests.