| Description | | Exhibits |

Permanent Collection of the Archaeological Museum of Siteia

The Palaikastro Kouros

This chryselephantine statuette of a young man is a masterpiece of Minoan art. It was made of at least eight pieces, which were pinned together using wooden dowels, now lost. The body, carved from a hippopotamus tooth, is delicately worked to show the anatomical details of the hands and legs. The Minoan zoma (loincloth or kilt), sandals and possibly a bracelet, were all made of gold sheet. The hairpiece is made of serpentinite, and the eyes of rock crystal. The statuette's wooden base, now lost, was covered in 'Egyptian blue' (a kind of glass paste) speckled with tiny gold discs. This figure was deliberately smashed during the pillage and arson of the Palaikastro town shrine (Building 5) in the Late Minoan I period. It is recomposed from hundreds of tiny pieces, which were recovered during three separate excavation campaigns. Made in Crete, this statuette displays strong Egyptian influences in its manufacturing techniques, materials and proportions.

Exhibit Features
Date: Late Bronze Age, 1480 - 1425 BC
Place of discovery: Palaikastro, Building 5, sanctuary of the city of Palaikastro
Dimensions: width: max 0,185 m, height: 0,54 m
Material: Serpentine, Tooth of hippopotamus
Inventory number: ΜΣ ΑΕ 8506
Copyright: Hellenic Ministry of Culture
  Suggestive Bibliography
Mac Gillivray J.A., Sackett L.H., Driessen J.M., "The Palaikastro Kouros, a Minoan Chryselephantine Statuette and its Aegean Bronze Age Context", BSA Studies, (1999)
Mac Gillivray J.A., "Ο Κούρος του Παλαικάστρου" στο Κρήτη-Αίγυπτος. Πολιτισμικοί δεσμοί τριών χιλιετιών: κατάλογος έκθεσης: Αρχαιολογικό Μουσείο Ηρακλείου, 21 Νοεμβρίου 1999-21 Σεπτεμβρίου 2000, Ηράκλειο, 2000, 300, αρ. 294