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Joy of Museums

Museums, Art Galleries and Historical Sites

Masterpieces of the National Archaeological Museum

National Archaeological Museum, Athens, Greece

Masterpieces of the National Archaeological Museum

The National Archaeological Museum contains many masterpieces of art, archaeology and objects of historical significance.

  • Mask of Agamemnon
    • The “Mask of Agamemnon” is one of the most famous gold artefacts from the ancient Greek Bronze Age. The Mask was discovered in 1876 by Heinrich Schliemann during excavations at Mycenae in Greece. This remarkable historical object is a gold leaf funeral mask which was found over the face of a body in a burial shaft in the Mycenaean Citadel.
  • Artemision Bronze
    • The Artemision Bronze represents either Zeus, the ancient Greek king of the gods of Mount Olympus or possibly Poseidon, the God of the Sea. This sculpture is a rare, ancient Greek bronze sculpture that was recovered from the sea off Cape Artemision, Greece. Created in the early Geek Classical Period of 460 BC, this masterpiece is the embodiment of beauty, control, and strength.
  • Antikythera Mechanism
    • The Antikythera mechanism is an ancient Greek analogue computer and mechanical model of the solar system used to predict planetary positions and eclipses. Discovered in 1902 in a shipwreck off the coast of the Greek island of Antikythera which is located between Crete and Peloponnese. The mechanism was designed and constructed by Greek scientists at about 100 BC to 200 BC. It has been suggested that the Antikythera Mechanism was lost in the shipwreck while being taken to Rome, together with other looted Greek treasure, to support a triumphal parade being staged by Julius Caesar.
  • Jockey of Artemision
    • The Jockey of Artemision is a bronze statue of a boy riding a horse, dated to around 150 BC. It is a rare surviving original bronze statue from Ancient Greece; it is rare because most ancient classical bronzes were melted down for their raw materials during periods of warfare and strife. This Greek masterpiece, as with other famous classical bronze statues that were saved from destruction, was lost in a shipwreck sometime in antiquity, before being discovered in the modern era.
  • Antikythera Youth
    • The Antikythera Youth is a 330 BC bronze statue of a young man discovered in 1900 by sponge-divers in the area of the ancient Antikythera shipwreck off the island of Antikythera, Greece. It was the first of the series of Greek bronze sculptures discovered in the Aegean which fundamentally altered the view of Ancient Greek sculpture. The statue was retrieved as multiple fragments and had to be restored in stages.
  • Head of a Cycladic Statue, Keros-Syros Culture
    • This head of a Cycladic Statue is similar to the ancient Cycladic art that flourished in the islands of the Aegean Sea from c. 3300 to 1100 BCE. The Cycladic culture is one of three dominant Aegean cultures along with the Minoan and Mycenaean civilisations. This marble head highlights the critical sculptured features of the nose, ears and mouth. The face is typical of the elongated oval Cycladic faces and is set on a long neck which may have been broken off a larger body. The sculpture has evidence of painted eyes and red vertical striations on the right check.

Explore Museums in Athens

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“We do not imitate, but are a model to others.”
– Pericles

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Photo Credit: By Tilemahos Efthimiadis from Athens, Greece [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

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