Megarons

WHAT ARE THEY?

WHAT IS A MEGARON?

  • main hall or central room of a palace or house, especially of Mycenaean Greece

Megaron = “great room”

MEGARON FLOOR PLANS:

Characteristics of a Megaron:

Artist’s rendition of what a typical Mycenaean megaron may have looked like

MYCENAEAN MEGARON:

A Megaron or “great room” consists of (going left to right in the above drawing): a front porch with two columns, an ante-chamber just inside, and then are large main room with four columns around a central fire pit (the domos, or throne room).

PALACE OF NESTOR AT PYLOS:

  • The Palace of Nestor is the primary structure identified with that of Mycenaean-era Pylos.  It was a two-storey building with store rooms, workshops, baths, light wells, reception rooms and a sewage system. The site is the best preserved Mycenaean Greek palace discovered.
  • had over 105 ground room floors
  • During excavation in 1939 around 1,000 Linear B tablets were identified.
  • The settlement had been long occupied with most artifacts discovered dating from 1300 BCE. The palace complex was destroyed by fire around 1200 BCE.
  • best preserved palace of the period

THE MEGARON AT PYLOS is the largest megaron measuring 42’ long x  37’ wide:

PALACE OF TIRYNS AT ARGOLIS:

  • Argolis region, Peloponnese, Greece
  • 1400-1200 BCE
  • Referenced by Homer, who claims that according to ancient traditions the massive walls were built by cyclopes.
  • According to Herodotus, when Cleomenis I of Spart defeated the Argives, their slaves occupied Tiryns for many years.  Herodotus also mentions that Tiryns took part in the Battle of Platea in 480 BC with 400 hoplites.

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THE MEGARON AT THE PALACE OF TIRYNS:

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EVOLUTION OF THE GREEK ARCHITECTURE AND THE MEGARON:

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Floor Plan – west wing of the white house: (resembles Megaron and Mycenaean layout)

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Modern day example Rose Garden & west wing lobby:

The Rose Garden was designed to serve as the Presidential reception area and used to entertain distinguished guests.
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The West Wing Lobby is used as a formal reception room for visitors of the President, Vice President, and White House staff.

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Modern day example Roosevelt Room & Oval office:

The Roosevelt Room is used for staff meetings, to announce the appointment of new staff members, and as a preparation room by large delegations before meeting in the Oval Office.
The Oval Office is used as the primary place of work for the President. It allows easy access to his staff in the West Wing and is close to the White House residence where the Presidential family lives. It is where the President addresses the nation regarding important matters.

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Works cited:

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