KINGLY KNOSSOS. Knossos was the center of Minoan civilization on Crete, and its palace is legendary. According to Greek mythology, it was the home of King Minos and the Minotaur—housed within a labyrinth. Large and richly decorated, the palace complex spanned 5 acres. At its center was a throne room (see reconstructed room, above), built in the 15th century B.C. as an addition to the palace. Lined with benches, its walls were covered with bright frescoes of griffins and leafy palms and water plants. On its north wall sat a stone throne, the oldest in the Mediterranean, in front of a stone bowl. The palace’s rich decoration demonstrates the power, wealth, and grandeur of the Bronze Age kingdoms of the Aegean and Near Eastern worlds.