Telchines Road, Akrotiri, Thera
Telchines Road in Ancient Akrotiri, on the island of Thera (or as it is popularly known Santorini), is nearly 4,000 years old. Telchines Road is the most extensive section of road excavated so far at the Akrotiri Archaeological Site. The road comes down from the north of the settlement and leads to the harbour. In the roofed area of the excavation, Telchines’ Road, the main road that passes in front of the buildings which have been excavated and investigated.
Akrotiri was a Minoan Bronze Age settlement on the volcanic Greek island of Santorini (Thera). The civilisation of the Bronze Age city was affiliated to the early Cretan culture. The Akrotiri settlement was destroyed in the Theran volcano eruption sometime in the 16th century BC which buried this site in volcanic ash. The ash preserved the remains of frescoes and many artefacts and artworks which were first excavated in 1967. This settlement has been suggested as a possible inspiration for Plato’s story of Atlantis.
In Greek mythology, the Telchines were the original inhabitants of the island of Rhodes and were known in Crete and Cyprus. They were regarded as excellent metallurgists, skilled metal workers in brass and iron. According to mythology, the gods eventually killed them because they began to produced a mixture of Stygian water and sulfur, which killed animals and plants. Accounts vary on how exactly they were destroyed by flood, or Zeus’s thunderbolt, or Poseidon’s trident.
- Did the archaeologist name this street after the early peoples known to have inhabited islands that probably migrated to and became the first settlers in Akrotiri? Or because of the mythical destruction brought on by gods to peoples that were experts in the metal arts as were the Akrotirians?
Highlights of Akrotiri Archaeological Site
Akrotiri Archaeological Site
- Name: Akrotiri Archaeological Site
- Island: Santorini
- Country: Greece
- Abandoned: 16th century BC
- Excavation: since 1967
- Type: Archaeological Site
“Faithful earth, unfaithful sea.“
– Greek Proverb
Photo Credit: JOM