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July 14 2013

‘The Riddle of the Labyrinth’: decoding an ancient language

Margalit Fox’s “The Riddle of the Labyrinth” tells the true story of three researchers who cracked the code of an ancient language, one inscribed on clay tablets and unearthed on the island of Crete.

In 1900, the young British archaeologist Arthur Evans began excavating a huge Bronze Age building on the north coast of Crete near present day Heraklion. Because of the site’s location, impressive size and complexity, he dubbed these remains the Palace of Minos, after the mythological Cretan king who made human sacrifices to the Minotaur in the labyrinth.

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