Neolithic gold on Myconos

At the furthest recess of the Bay of Panormos, which cuts deep into the northern coast of Myconos, archaeologists excavating a 7,000-year-old settlement have unearthed well-preserved remains of public buildings and a rare example of the Neolithic goldsmith’s art. Dig head Adamantios Sampson told Kathimerini that this year’s excavation at Ftelia, a beach popular among windsurfers, turned up two small buildings ending in apses that were probably not used as simple dwellings. He believes the structures – whose walls survive to a height of 1.8 meters – may have been granaries, or even cult areas. An earlier building, dating to around 5000 BC, is seen as a precursor of the Megaron type that evolved into the basic unit of the Mycenaean palace and the first Greek temples. This year’s excavations also unearthed large quantities of locally made Neolithic pottery, obsidian blades, terracotta figurines and the fired clay model of a boat, as well as an extremely rare circular gold pendant with a hole in the middle for suspension.

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