DAVID PARKER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DAVID PARKER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Tholos Tomb interior, Mycenae. Vaulted tholos, or beehive, tombs were common in Greece during the monumental period of the Late Bronze Age. These round burial structures characterized by high-pitched false domes were created by the superposition of successively smaller rings of mudbricks or, more often, stones. The resulting structures resembled beehives. This tomb at Mycenae was contemporary with the Mycenaean civilisation. The tombs usually contained more than one burial, in various places in the tomb either on the floor, in pits and cists or on stone-built or rock-cut benches, and with various grave goods. After a burial, the entrance to the tomb was filled in with soil, leaving a small mound with most of the tomb underground. The empty triangular space above the doorway was a structural device designed to relieve the stresses on the large lintel stones above the doorway.
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