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The Tomb of Agamemnon (Wonders of the World)

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  53 Ratings  ·  10 Reviews
Read the Bldg Blog interview with Mary Beard about the Wonders of the World series (Part I and Part II)

Mycenae, the fabled city of Homer's King Agamemnon, still stands in a remote corner of mainland Greece. Revered in antiquity as the pagan world's most tangible connection to the heroes of the Trojan War, Mycenae leapt into the headlines in the late nineteenth century when
Hardcover, 201 pages
Published March 1st 2006 by Harvard University Press
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After reading this, I got the others in the series. Isn't that enough of a review?
Mar 03, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: art-history
I love this series of books headed up by the one and only Mary Beard. I started with the one on the Parthenon as part of my senior art history thesis in college and found it a valuable resource as well as an entertaining and witty almost impossible combination in the field.

I enjoyed it so much that I decided to read this one after all these years and was not disappointed. Whether it be the Parthenon, Mycenea, the Alhambra, or Westminster Abbey, this series takes 200 pages or so to dis
Mar 30, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Greek history lovers
This book wasn’t what I was expecting. I was expecting the book to open with a chapter providing a generalised overview about Mycenaean culture, before diving into an intensive examination of the ruins at Mycenae and the specific artefacts that are in name only associated with the likes of Agamemnon and so forth. Instead I got something quite different. The book does spend some time discussing and examining the artefacts, but it then launches into discussions of how the artefacts and sites were ...more
Timothy Urban
Jul 31, 2011 rated it liked it
Fascinating study of the impact of those finds. A Greek myth turns into a historical reality overnight.

Also amazing is that those early archaeologists, esp Schliemann, were little more than well-read circus entertainers, carelessly ploughing up ancient settlements and waving the shiny bits they found in the world's face. The theories and chronology surrounding the finds are just plucked out of the air to maximise publicity.

Later studies by Greek archaeologists put us on the right track, but not
Linda Humberstone
Good interesting book, very explicit about position of Mycenae and the locations of the archaeological digs and finds there. The gold death masks are fascinating as the faces they depict are so different. I personally do not think too badly of Schliemann as he did generate a renewed interest in Greek and Mediterranean archaeology although his methods were inexcusable. How the Mycenaens were seen throughout the conflicts of the 20th century are enlightening especially regarding the Nazi regime bu ...more
May 05, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: history, greece
I frankly had to force myself through this book. It is unclear to me exactly what it is about. I found the characterizations of evolving attitudes towards ancient Greece to be slightly interesting, but I was unable to really grasp what the overall thesis behind this book was. Perhaps this book is only really interesting to those seriously interested in archaeology. I would typify the style of this book as rambling, which is not good in a book this short because so many tangents were embarked upo ...more
Jun 12, 2016 rated it liked it
The archaeology of ancient Greece: a tale of ego, politics, science, literature, and art. A fascinating history of the discovery and multiple interpretations (changing over time) of the ruins at Mycenae, which draws upon mythology, origins of Aryan racial constructions (and the uses of the swastika), Homer, the American poet H.D., the Linear B script, World War I and II, modern Greek politics, and the New Archaeology.
Alex Williams
Dec 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes history and Greece
This was one of the greatest books I have ever read about Agamemnon. It is a great book that talks about Agamemnon and how famous historians have discovered more about him. This book describes Mycenae's history, the times of Agamemnon, the time around the World Wars when many archeologists (from Axis, Allied, and Neutral countries). Great book, not extremely dense, but not an easy read either. I will be re-reading this book many a time.
Sep 17, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: misc_nonfiction
A fun introduction to Agamemnon and the story behind the famous tomb in Mycenae at the Lion Gate. This is entertaining history that covers alot of ground in a tiny book---from Bronze Age Greece to the history of the tomb's excavation and its influence on later generations. Not dry at all with a few good photos.
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Other Books in the Series

Wonders of the World (1 - 10 of 15 books)
  • The Alhambra
  • Westminster Abbey
  • The Temple of Jerusalem
  • The Colosseum
  • The Rosetta Stone and the Rebirth of Ancient Egypt (Wonders of the World)
  • St Peter's (Wonders Of The World)
  • The Forbidden City
  • Taj Mahal
  • Stonehenge
  • Piazza San Marco