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The exhibit

Juktas. 1600-1450 BC

Among the spectacular objects in this case is a tiny gold drop-shaped ornament. It is a pendant, as we can see from the suspension loop. Its elaborate decoration is difficult to make out from a distance. Its tiny surface is decorated with a snake, a scorpion and an insect. The scorpion and the insect are cast in a mould, while the snake is formed of fine wire filigree. All three were attached to the body of the pendant. The choice of subject shows that the ornament was probably an apotropaic amulet, meaning that its owner may have worn it to avert the negative consequences of a venomous bite or sting. The use of amulets was connected to the magico-religious beliefs of the Minoans, which are often compared to those of Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia. The gold drop pendant is the valuable offering of a wealthy worshipper to the Juktas sanctuary, the largest and richest peak sanctuary of Minoan Crete, which was directly linked to Knossos.
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