Mysterious Mycenae: A mighty civilization that dominated the Greek world between 1600 and 1200 B.C.

Mycenae, a hilltop fortress located on the Peloponnesian Peninsula SW of Athens was the hub of a mighty civilization that dominated the Greek world between 1600 and 1200 B.C., a thousand years before Athens' Golden Age.

This is an aerial view of the Mycenaean ruins in Greece.     Once ruled by King Agamemnon, who fought in the Trojan War, the site is now a popular tourist destination.

This is an aerial view of the Mycenaean ruins in Greece.

Once ruled by King Agamemnon, who fought in the Trojan War, the site is now a popular tourist destination.

The Mycenaeans were as distant and mysterious to the Golden Age Greeks as Plato and Socrates are to us today. Mycenae lay unappreciated until the 19th century when a treasure trove of gold was unearthed in the necropolis. Today, those treasures, including the so-called "Mask of Agamemnon" are the star attractions in Athens' National Archaeological Museum. This discovery affirmed the archeologists' theory that Mycenae was Homer's fabled city "rich in gold."