The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

The Old World is a reference to those parts of Earth known to Europeans before the voyages of Christopher Columbus; it includes Europe, Asia and Africa.

Moderators: Minimalist, MichelleH

Samra
Posts: 45
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 3:53 pm

The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Samra » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:37 am

This is our latest high-precision restoration of the Minoan frescoes. It's a large shipping scene from the center of the Akrotiri Miniature Frieze. I hope everyone enjoys it.

Image

A noteworthy aspect of this work centers on the ship with 21 oars and prominent sun symbol on the side of it's hull in the top left. This vessel must have been very large. If you assume a tight 1.3 meters (4.3 feet) for the rowing space allotted to each oar, this results in 27.3 meters (89.6 feet) just for the assembly of oarsmen. This ship most probably well exceeded 35 meters (~115 feet) in length with a maximum beam width of something like 7 to 9 meters (23 or 29.5 feet). This is significantly bigger than Columbus' largest ship on the first voyage - his flag ship the Santa Maria. It has been estimated at anywhere from 18 to 26.5 meters (59.1 to 87 feet) in length with a max. beam width of 6 to 7.6 meters (19.7 to 25 feet).

There are several other features of interest in this scene - the sun symbol and sun burst floral ornaments on the large ship, the bronze (?) eye-ring mast fixture of the sailing ship, the small figure on the right of the base of the same ship's stern turret, and the four boar's tusk helmets (a symbol of war and military power) under the large ship's awning. There appear to be three more of these helmets on the ship's unrestored stern turret.

I would be happy to send anyone a larger image on request or you can always go here:

Art Gallery

for the same and more complete information.

Best,
Sheppard Baird

User avatar
Johnny
Posts: 95
Joined: Wed Apr 07, 2010 7:03 am
Location: Denver, CO
Contact:

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Johnny » Wed Jun 16, 2010 9:22 am

Quite nice! Thanks for the image and the scavenger hunt for small details. It's like Where's Waldo with Minoans.
“Scar tissue is stronger than regular tissue. Realize the strength, move on.” - Henry Rollins

Minimalist
Forum Moderator
Posts: 15831
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2005 1:09 pm
Location: Arizona

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Minimalist » Wed Jun 16, 2010 9:44 am

Of course, all that is based on the assumption that the artist was drawing to scale.
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

-- George Carlin

kbs2244
Posts: 2472
Joined: Wed Jul 12, 2006 12:47 pm

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by kbs2244 » Wed Jun 16, 2010 9:53 am

It doesn’t have to be to scale Min.
In fact art of that time seldom was.
The relative size of things were often to show importance.
But it often was accurate in details like the number of rowers.

I think that is why they are doing the math to try a figure out the real size of what is shown.

I do like the headline.
Sailors as DNA transporters.

Samra
Posts: 45
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 3:53 pm

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Samra » Wed Jun 16, 2010 10:35 am

Hi Min,

The full-size restoration artwork is over twice the size of the original fresco on Santorini but it can be scaled down to very precisely overlay it. This work took several hundred hours to complete and utilized many high-resolution images of the original including the ultimate reference - the superb publication "The Wall Paintings of Thera" by Dr. Christos Doumas.

I can say this with some authority since I'm the artist. I invite anyone to directly compare it with the original so they can see for themselves.

Best,
Sheppard

Minimalist
Forum Moderator
Posts: 15831
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2005 1:09 pm
Location: Arizona

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Minimalist » Wed Jun 16, 2010 10:39 am

In two of the boats the rowers are shown standing on the deck with the oar in the water, gondola-style.

The craft in question would have to be a multi-decked affair....like a quinquireme which did not show up in the Med for more than a thousand years.

I do have a bit of a problem with taking artistic impression too far.
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

-- George Carlin

Minimalist
Forum Moderator
Posts: 15831
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2005 1:09 pm
Location: Arizona

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Minimalist » Wed Jun 16, 2010 10:41 am

It's not the accuracy of the copying that bothers me.

I do like the headline.
Sailors as DNA transporters.

No one would argue against that.

:D
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

-- George Carlin

Samra
Posts: 45
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 3:53 pm

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Samra » Wed Jun 16, 2010 12:00 pm

Fortunately the Miniature Frieze is one of the most complete fragment reconstructions we have from the time and very little subjectivity was required to complete it. The Akrotiri frescoes are much more complete, being buried by the eruption, than those found elsewhere. We used a "precision minimalist" methodology where everything is derived directly from the original as much as possible.

Sheppard

E.P. Grondine

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by E.P. Grondine » Wed Jun 16, 2010 2:54 pm

Hello Sheppard -

IMO, what you are working with is a fresco showing the dispatch of a delegation from Troy (Ilios) to Thera for the trade federation meeting.

Note especially the sun (Ilios, Helios) on the bow of the regal ship, the canal system of the departure town, and the tower of the arrival town.

E.P.

Rokcet Scientist

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Rokcet Scientist » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:43 pm

Samra wrote:I would be happy to send anyone a larger image on request or you can always go here:

Art Gallery

for the same and more complete information.

Best,
Sheppard Baird
Unfortunately that link doesn't lead to a larger image. And what you did post looks like it's been cut off and is actually part of something much bigger.

If you have a larger and/or more complete image can you post a link to it please?

Anyway, if that was Akrotiri, that must date back to the 16th century BC. And the seafaring skills and technology of the time seem very well developed already.
This was also the era of the rise, i.e. expansion of Phoenicia, possibly Crete's/Thera's most important trading partner and major lifeline. The Levantines were considered to be the über-navigators of their time. Britain and the Canary Islands until now understood to have been the farthest reaches of their travels. But there are indications they may have traveled far beyond that, actually circumnavigating the globe on a regular basis, establishing and visiting their own trading posts in far lands, and collecting exotic 'spices' to sell back home in the Med as if it were diamonds. Drugs.

User avatar
Sam Salmon
Posts: 349
Joined: Sun Mar 12, 2006 9:30 am
Location: Vancouver-by-the-Sea

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Sam Salmon » Wed Jun 16, 2010 11:08 pm

Rokcet Scientist wrote:.......there are indications they may have traveled far beyond that, actually circumnavigating the globe on a regular basis, establishing and visiting their own trading posts in far lands, and collecting exotic 'spices' to sell back home in the Med as if it were diamonds. Drugs.
Only in your limited & fevered imagination.

Tiompan
Posts: 1140
Joined: Tue May 11, 2010 5:13 am

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Tiompan » Thu Jun 17, 2010 7:58 am

Thanks Sheppard , whilst it is much the same time period if not same media , I wondered have you come across any spirals
resembling that found on the Phaistos disc and possible rock art i.e "sectioned " .The only spirals I am aware of from the same period and area are on
pottery , high points of walls or ceilings and the odd example of rock art , only one of which has the "sections " .

George

User avatar
Cognito
Posts: 1615
Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2006 10:37 am
Location: Southern California

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Cognito » Thu Jun 17, 2010 8:05 am

Anyway, if that was Akrotiri, that must date back to the 16th century BC. And the seafaring skills and technology of the time seem very well developed already.
The volcano at Akrotiri blew up in 1628bce as evidenced by dendrochronogy.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santorini
http://www.therafoundation.org/articles/chronololy/
This was also the era of the rise, i.e. expansion of Phoenicia, possibly Crete's/Thera's most important trading partner and major lifeline. The Levantines were considered to be the über-navigators of their time.
The Hyksos (probably Amorites, some Canaanites, and a series of other Semite tribes) overran Phoenician cities along the Levant when entering Egypt by circa 1640bce (some believe as early as 1784bce). Their empire survived until Pharaoh Ahmose expelled them circa 1540bce. Most Phoenician cities were apparently abandoned until the end of the Hyksos reign. The resurgence of Phoenician voyaging really begins after the Sea Peoples destroyed the Hittites, the Mycenaeans, and severely weakened the Egyptian empire circa 1200bce, while returning the city of Arwad from the Hittites to Phoenicia. BTW, no other Phoenician cities were sacked during the Sea Peoples' onslaught - which implies that the Phoenicians were allied with them.
http://www.phoenician.org/sea_peoples.htm
Natural selection favors the paranoid

Samra
Posts: 45
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 3:53 pm

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Samra » Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:43 am

I must say that this is simply a presentation of more clearly revealed direct evidence from Akrotiri's Miniature Frieze and I do not mean to imply anything more than these large ships were much more advanced than many assume. I've sailed the, at times, very rough and "howling" Aegean Sea so if they could build ships that could deal with it these very large ships were certainly capable of traversing the Mediterranean and venturing out into the ocean as long as they were properly provisioned.

Here's a larger image from the Art Gallery for those unable to find it. A larger image is freely available from the gallery.

Image

My current view of the Frieze is that it's a scene from the west of Thera and one of the major Minoan ports on the northern coast of Crete with Thera on the left and Crete to the right. Many of my colleagues also agree with this. Here's our first precision restoration from the Frieze of the "Ringed Islands of Thera":

Image

The general configuration of the islands match well with the 1992 geological reconstruction of Santorini before the eruption by Druitt and Francaviglia show on this page:

Ringed Islands of Thera

The profile of the mountains in the fresco also match quite well with Santorini's geography. Profitas Ilias, Santorini's highest peak, is on the right and Pyrgos is to its left. This can easily be confirmed with Google Earth. The arrival port on Crete was probably either Malia or Gournia because of the close proximity of the mountains shown in the Frieze. There are no mountains to the west that are close to Amnissos or the other ports of Knossos.

Hope this helps.

Sheppard Baird

Samra
Posts: 45
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 3:53 pm

Re: The Bronze Age Minoan DNA Transportation System

Post by Samra » Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:52 am

Tiompan wrote:Thanks Sheppard , whilst it is much the same time period if not same media , I wondered have you come across any spirals
resembling that found on the Phaistos disc and possible rock art i.e "sectioned " .The only spirals I am aware of from the same period and area are on
pottery , high points of walls or ceilings and the odd example of rock art , only one of which has the "sections " .

George
Hi George,

A possible example of the spirals you speak of is on the side of the ship in the top right. Its entire hull is apparently decorated with a continuous line of spirals. Perhaps more will be revealed in future restorations.

Sheppard

Post Reply