The Mycenaean Acropolis of Midea and The Necropolis of Dendra

The acropolis of Midea was, together with Mycenae and Tiryns, one of the three main Mycenaean centres in Argolida. Its importance is demonstrated by the impressive cyclopean defenses, its connection with mythology, the rich necropolis in the neighbouring site of Dendra and the treasures from the excavations of the site.

The cyclopean fortifications and the connection of the Acropolis of Midea with the extensive Mycenaean cemetery in the neighboring Dendra, rank Midea among the major Mycenaean centres of the mainland. – © Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sport/Ephorate of Antiquities of Argolida

The cyclopean fortifications and the connection of the Acropolis of Midea with the extensive Mycenaean cemetery in the neighboring Dendra, rank Midea among the major Mycenaean centres of the mainland. – © Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sport/Ephorate of Antiquities of Argolida

According to one legend Midea has been founded by king Perseus, whereas other tradition states that this land was the prison where Hippodamia, Pelops’ mother, was punished, and the land was named after the queen. It was built to control the ancient passage to Epidaurus. Greek and foreign researchers have underlined its strategic position; the acropolis controls the plain of Argolida. Recent excavations brought to light two monumental entrances into the acropolis and various building complexes.

The Mycenaean Necropolis at Dendra

The Mycenaean Necropolis at Dendra

The archaeological site of the cemetery of Dendra is situated on a hill slope, on the west of the Mycenaean town of Midea, outside the village that bears the same name. It constitutes one of the biggest Mycenaean cemeteries of Peloponnesus. Dendra with its royal tombs is already famous for the excavation of the bronze armor of Dendra, the most ancient armor found. The discovery brought to light the ancient burial habits and confirmed Homeric poems. The valuables, the everyday life objects, the elaborate jewelry and the figurines of reverence discovered document the wealth of that period. Recent excavations brought to light the remains of two horses and provided valuable insight on the rituals of the Mycenaean age.