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Eleftherna

Eleftherna archaeology tour

Let’s explore the outskirts of Rethymno, driving through the largest and  oldest olive field of the Eastern Mediterranean Arkadi olive field.
We arrive at an altitude of 500 meters above sea level the Holy Monastery of Arkadi. Renaissance and Baroque on the facade and the symbol of Freedom for the people of Crete!

We continue to  ancient Eleftherna to visit the fantastic new museum of ancient Homeric Eleftherna!
A burial site of warriors, heroes and  witches under the highest and sacred mountain of Crete mount Ida Psiloritis. Mount Ida is the highest mountain of Crete reaching 2.456 meters above sea level.
This sacred mountain has played a major role in the making of Crete as the land of Ancient Gods, myths  and legends. It was birth place to a sacred infant as far back as the Neolithic Era, later known to all as Zeus king of the Ancient Gods of Greece.
Born to Crete in the care of the goat Amalthea and nymph Melissa, the same cave Plato refers to in his dialogues concerning the ability to see …could this be the source, the inspiration for Saramangous book Blindness?
This Holy mountain in antiquity with its sacred cave also delivered oracles and the sacred tablets of laws from the Gods to the people of Crete.
Eleftherna one of the strongest cities of Western Crete in antiquity rested on the foot of this mountain and controlled passage to the sacred cave.
We have the opportunity to see unpublished finds from this marvelous site together on our tour.
Finds from Minoan Crete to inspirations from Egypt of the Bronze Age, Age of Iron to Classical Era and finally Byzantine!
We see the routes  and travels of the brave warriors archers of this city state into Anatolia as well as the commercial routes imports and exports.
And how we understand that the Eastern Mediterranean has a tradition of  many Ulysses.
So Homer was true for we see how heroes were honored, how prisoners were sacrificed ?
How witches were adorned and respected.
We see the Pyra of a hero as we remember the grief of Achilles over the loss of his best friend Patroclus.
Seeing the brave warriors burial site and finds of the Era of the battle of Troy is unique…
Seeing how a dog followed shortly after his young master died is so touching…
How brave women were honored after loosing their life during child birth. How a horse and rooster accompany a young man that passed too soon…
The very first dedication to the unknown soldier so far excavated.
How the Archangel Michael in later centuries was worshiped at the same spot.
We continue to visit the beautiful traditional village of Margarites one of the ancient pottery centers of Crete!
Here we have the chance to potter around and have something to eat under the mulberry trees in the village square.
A day of heroes, sacrifices people make for their loved ones their beliefs, a day of historical continuity from Minoan Crete until this day.
Olive trees that have stood in that same soil for centuries, a potter making a pot as it was done before the birth of Christ.
This day is a good day.

 

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