The name of Knossos is mentioned in ancient Greek references as the major city of Crete. The identification of Knossos with the Bronze Age site is supported by excavations, Roman coins were also discovered during the pre-excavation the site over the surrounding fields.
Homer in his “Odyssey” offers another certification of the name of Knossos:
“Among their cities is the great city of Cnosus, where Minos reigned when nine years old, he that held converse with great Zeus.”
The Minoan civilisation takes it's name from King Minos, famous for his wisdom . The ancient history says that he hired the Athenian architect, mathematician, and inventor Daedelus to design and construct his palace so cleverly that no one who entered could find their way back out without guidance, like a labyrinth. Myth also tells us about the half-man/half-bull, the Minotaur, Daedelus and his son Ikaros, Theseus and Ariadni and the bull dancing.
The Palace of Knossos was undoubtedly the ceremonial and political center of the Minoan civilazation and culture. It appears as a maze of workrooms, living spaces, and storerooms close to a central square. An approximate graphic view of some aspects of Cretan life in the Bronze Age is provided by restorations of the palace's indoor and outdoor murals, as it is also by the decorative motifs of the pottery and the insignia on the seals and sealing.
The great palace was gradually built between 1700 and 1400 BC, with periodic rebuilding after destruction. The interesting layout is displaying 1,300 rooms connected with corridors of varying sizes. The palace included main entrances on each of its four cardinal faces,a theater, King Minos Throne room , Royal Apartments an extensive storerooms (also called magazines). Within the storerooms were large clay containers (pithoi) that held oil, grains, dried fish, beans, and olives. Many of the items were processed at the palace, which had grain mills, oil presses, and wine presses. Beneath the pithoi were stone holes that were used to store more valuable objects, such as gold.
The Heraklion Archaeological Museum
The Museum is located in Heraklion, Crete. It is one of the greatest museums in Greece and the best in the world for Minoan art, as it contains the most notable and complete collection of artifacts of the Minoan civilization of Cretan prehistory, covering 5,500 years from the Neolithic period.
The museum is recently renovated, is located in the town center and was built between 1937 and 1940 by the architect Patroklos Karantinos.