Archaeological Museum of Heraklion

The Archaeological Museum of Heraklion is the museum of ancient Cretan civilization and contains finds from all over the island. It is the equivalent for Crete of the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, which contains finds from the Greek Mainland and the islands. Already by 1883 the Heraklion Society for the Promotion of Education collected antiquities, which in 1900 were given over to the Cretan State. The foundations of the first museum were laid in 1904 at the location of the remnants of the monastery church of St Francis. The building project for the present museum started in 1935. This building was recently renovated. It contains masterpieces of art well known worldwide and attracts a great number of visitors. The Minoan collections in particular are unique. There is, at present, a temporary exhibition of the most notable finds. The design and manufacture of the new exhibit cases are currently expected in order to complete the reorganization of the exhibition and opening of the Museum.




Phaistos Disk
Clay disk with stamped pictographic signs in a spiral pattern.


Bull’s head libation vessel (rhyton)
Libation vessel (rhyton) from the Little Palace at Knossos.


The Harvester Vase
Steatite libation vessel (rhyton) with a relief depiction of a procession of harvesters commanded by a man holding a staff, an officer or priest.


Rock crystal libation vessel (rhyton)
Libation vessel (rhyton) of rock crystal with a collar of ivory disks covered in gold foil.


The Ayia Triada sarcophagus
Sarcophagus of cut limestone covered in plaster painted with scenes that depict burial customs.


Ivory figurine of a bull-leaper
Ivory figurine of a bull-leaper, part of a three-dimensional composition depicting bull-leaping.


Clay Kamares-Style krater
Krater with rich relief and colour painted decoration.


Clay libation vessel (rhyton)
Clay libation vessel (rhyton) in the form of a three-wheeled, cattle-drawn cart with a rider, from Karphi.


Clay Boat model


Clay figurine with raised arms
Clay figurine with the standardised gesture of raised arms, wearing a diadem with poppy heads.


Linear A tablet
Clay elongated tablet in Linear A, from the palace at Malia.


Linear B tablet
Linear B tablet documenting the delivery of wheels to the Knossian palace


The Bull-Leaping fresco
Fresco composition from the palace at Knossos, East Wing.


The Lily Prince
Relief fresco depicting the so-called Lily Prince, composition of various fragments recovered in the South Wing of the palace at Knossos.


“Chessboard”
Gamingboard made from precious and semiprecious material.


Snake Goddess
Snake Goddess idol of faience.


Gold foliate diadem attachment
Gold foliate diadem attachment in the shape of olive leaves with a stalk from twisted wire.


Gold signet ring
Gold signet ring with a religious scene.


The Bee-Pendant
The Bee-Pendant from Chryssolakkos at Malia.


Gold votive double axe
Gold votive double axe with incised decoration from the Arkalochori Cave.


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