Nov. 22, 2017 – Many of our ideas about Minoan civilization—drawn largely from the ruins of Knossos—are, at least in part, products of artful imagination.

Some three decades ago—an eye blink in archaeological time—I looked out over the ancient ruins of Knossos in Crete, accompanied by a bus-load of tourists and a voluble guide. Here was a magnificent ruin of a Bronze Age palace from which a ruler once oversaw a “spacious and rich and populous” kingdom (as Homer described Crete, the largest of the Greek islands).