The Palace of Knossos : Minoan citadel

The Knossos Palace lay at the centre of the ancient Minoan civilisation on the Greek island of Crete .

The Minoans were an early Greek civilisation with cultural links to the civilisation of ancient Egypt.

The Knossos Palace was built around a large central courtyard connecting a labyrinth of one thousand three hundred rooms spanning twenty-four thousand square feet, and linked by a labyrinthine network of corridors.

The terms “Knossos” and “palace” are somewhat ambiguous, but this was more than just a residence of the monarch, designed to function as a civic, religious, and economic center.

Extensive storerooms housed large ceramic containers or pithoi, used to store oil, grains, dried fish, beans, and olives… cooled in summer by extensive porticoes that capture the sea breeze.

The structure made use of Minoan columns, fashioned from the truck cypress trees, typically painted red and mounted on round, stone bases.

Walls were adorned with high color frescoes – typical of the classical period – depicting humans, legendary creatures, animals, vegetation and often marine life.