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Journal Article

Bathing at the Mycenaean Palace of Tiryns

Joseph W. Shaw
American Journal of Archaeology
Vol. 116, No. 4 (October 2012), pp. 555-571
DOI: 10.3764/aja.116.4.0555
Stable URL:
Page Count: 17

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Topics: Bathing, Palaces, Rooms, Architecture, Drains, Drainage water, Stone, Bathtubs, Anthropological museums, Bronze age
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Bathing at the Mycenaean Palace of Tiryns
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Among Heinrich Schliemann’s discoveries of architecture at Mycenaean Tiryns in the Argolid Plain in southern Greece, one of the most impressive was a single huge rectangular stone slab that covered the floor of a relatively small square room. The slab’s surface was smoothed down and provided with drilled sockets to anchor a wooden dado. The slab was tilted slightly to provide a slope for water to run off through a carved trough and surely served as an unusual floor for a room devoted to bathing, not far from the Throne Room of the palace. This article deals with the bathing room and, in particular, a proposed wooden bench built along its side walls. It also investigates what we know about bathing in the Aegean during the Late Bronze Age. Additional figures can be found under this article’s abstract on AJA Online.

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