The Genesis Of The Mycenaean Citadel: A Philosophical Quest For The Origins Of The Architectural Forms

PhD Thesis

Zekiou, Olga 2015. The Genesis Of The Mycenaean Citadel: A Philosophical Quest For The Origins Of The Architectural Forms. PhD Thesis University of East London Architecture, Computing and Engineering
AuthorsZekiou, Olga
TypePhD Thesis

This thesis deals with the origins of the architectural forms as expressed in the Homeric Mycenaean citadel. The Genesis of the Mycenaean Citadel is a philosophical quest which reveals the poetic dimension of the Mycenaean architecture.
The Introduction deals with general theories on the subject of space, which converge into one, forming the spinal idea of the thesis. The ‘process of individuation’, the process by which a person becomes ‘in-dividual’ that is a separate, indivisible unity or ‘whole’, is a process of transformation and renewal which at collective level takes place within the citadel. This is built on the archetype which expresses both the nature of the soul as a microcosm and of the divinely ordered Cosmos. The confrontation of the rational ‘ego’ with the unconscious is the process which brings us to the ‘self’, that organising center of the human psyche which is symbolised through the centre of the citadel. .
Chapter I refers to ‘the Archetype of the Mycenaean citadel’. The Mycenaean citadel, which is built on a certain pattern of placement and orientation in relation to landscape formations, reproduces images which belong to the category of the ‘archetypal mother’. On the other hand, its adjustment to a central point with ‘high’ significance, recalls the archetypal image of Shiva-Shakti. The citadel realises the concept of a Kantian ‘One-all embracing space’; it is a cosmogonic symbol but also a philosophical one.
Chapter II examines the column in its dual meaning, which is expressed in one structure; column and capital unite within their symbolism the conscious and unconscious contents of the human psyche and express the archetype of wholeness and goal of the individuation process.
Chapter III is a philosophical research into the ‘symbolism of the triangle’, the sacred Pythagorean symbol which expresses certain cosmological beliefs about the relation between human nature and the divinely ordered Cosmos. The triangular slab over the Lion Gate is a representation of the Dionysiac ‘palingenesia’, that is the continuity of One life, which was central to the Mycenaean religion.
Chapter IV deals with the tripartite ‘megaron’. The circular hearth within the four-columned hall expresses the ‘quaternity of the One’, one of the oldest religious symbols of humanity. Zeus is revealed in the ‘fiery monadic unit-cubit’ as an all-embracing god next to goddess Hestia, symbolised by the circular hearth. The ‘megaron’ expresses the alchemical quaternity and the triad but also the psychological stages of development in the process towards wholeness.
In the Conclusions it is emphasised that the Mycenaean citadel was created as if in a repetition of a cosmogony. It is a ‘mandala’, the universal image which is identified with God-image in man. Moreover it is built in order to be experienced by its citizen in the process of his psychological transformation towards the ‘self’, the divine element within the psyche which unites with the divinely ordered Cosmos

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Publication dates
PrintNov 2015
Publication process dates
Deposited03 Aug 2016
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