Akrotiri, Santorini

   Santorini, or Thera,  is considered the most likely inspiration for Plato's Atlantis. The huge volcanic explosion c 1600 BC destroyed most of the island and created the huge tsunami that devastated Crete. What is left is a group of islands surrounding a caldera. Already the next volcano is growing, and has formed the island of Nea Kameni. A tourist attraction now, but give it a few thousand years . . .
   The Atlantis theory has be bolstered  with the twentieth century discovery of the city of Akrotiri, wonderfully preserved under metres of volcanic ash. The site has been closed for many years, but reopened to visitors in 2012, so we were able to go there in 2013.  The site has been compared to Pompeii, but is around 1600 years older.  Only a small part of the city has so far been uncovered. 

   For me, the greatest eye-opener here is the art. Many of the wall paintings have been rescued and restored; to see them you will need to go to the museum in the main town of Hera, though some have gone to Athens.  Also in Hera is a display of the Akrotiran art in 3D photographic reproductions. 

Boys boxing

A fisherman

Blue monkeys

Ships arriving at port

You may well be thinking that this thread has weaved its way very far indeed from Titian. Maybe, but let's do one comparison. Let's look at that blue monkey again, and then Titian . . .

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