22 July 2007

Hurrying back from Crete

Zenobia has been silent these last few weeks due to my working on 'Minoan Crete' -- not digging this time but studying stuff already excavated: nice and clean work for a change. Now I'm flying to my desk, an imaginary passenger in this divine chariot drawn by a Cretan wild goat (with the long curved horns of an agrimi, a species that still survives in the high White Mountains and on the barren islet of Theodorou off the north coast of Crete). The picture comes from the Ayia Triada sarcophagus (14th century BC) and is usually interpreted as showing two goddesses escorting the dead ruler interred within on his journey to the netherworld. But I just wonder if the driver holding the whip and reins is not the sole goddess in the scene while the passenger in the foreground is a Minoan queen on her way to the afterworld.

Too much sun, perhaps.

Coming up very soon: another look at The Curious Case of Elagabalus' Beard or Hairiness Makes the Man.

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