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Archaeological Museum of Chania

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Ifigenia Studios and Suites, Evgenia Studios, Kriti Hotel, Melia Studios, Michalis Villas, Villa Eleana, Erofili Apartments, Agrimia Hotel, Lissos Apartments, Blazis House

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The Venetian church of San Francesco, the Archaeological Museum of Chania
The Venetian church of San Francesco, the Archaeological Museum of Chania
Next to the Roman Catholic church is the Archaeological Museum of Chania. This building was the magnificent Venetian church of San Francesco. A visit is worthwhile in order to see the inside of the former church and its garden. There are some very interesting local artefacts from the Minoan, the Hellenistic and Roman eras. The contents of the museum exhibits were discovered locally and follow a chronological order of presentation, beginning with Neolithic artefacts. The exhibits are well-labelled in Greek and English and there is a brief explanation as to their importance and where they were found.
Also displayed are two clay tablets inscribed in Linear A and Linear B script. Except for the tablets discovered at Knossos, these tablets excavated in Kastelli are the only examples of the two scripts being found together.
There are some very interesting local artefacts from the Minoan, the Hellenistic and Roman eras. The contents of the museum exhibits were discovered locally and follow a chronological order of presentation, beginning with Neolithic artefacts. The exhibits are well-labelled in Greek and English and there is a brief explanation as to their importance and where they were found.
Neolithic Artefacts
The exhibits of the museum were discovered locally and follow a chronological order of presentation beginning with Neolithic artefacts.
Minoan Pottery
The front of the museum is dominated by Minoan pottery, including several of the large pithari jars.
Minoan Larnakes
In the centre of the room is a collection of larnakes, or Minoan clay tombs, delightfully painted with birds and octopuses as well as the double axe and horns of the Minoan cult.
Archaic-style clay figurine from Axos
Archaic-style clay figurine from Axos
One of the larnakes still contains two small skeletons.
Greco-Roman Finds
Further back are a number of Greco-Roman finds, including glassware, mosaics, and sculpture. At the rear of the museum is a wonderful Roman statue known as the Philosopher of Elyros excavated from that area of Western Crete.
The Museum Building
The museum building itself is clearly in Venetian style with its pointed arches. The central aisle had three domed chapels (right and left of today's entrance). A bell tower was also immediately to the left of the present entrance. The church had a large central aisle and two others right and left. The aisle on the north side has four more chapels (pareklisia). The aisles are separated with arches. The church was converted to the Tzami of Yousouf Aga during the Turkish occupation; the remains of the minaret are in the garden.
In the garden of the Museum are Venetian portals transferred here after the mansions to which they once belonged collapsed. Two are from the Zangaroli mansion that was in the Kastelli area of the city. Zangaroli was Venetian governor of Crete (circa 1606) and his sons, Orthodox converts, built the Agia Triada Monastery on the Akrotiri. There are also two fountains in the garden; one is Turkish and the other (working) is the Venetian fountain from the harbour's Platia Sindrivaniou.

Photos of Archaeological Museum of Chania:


Object from Yerospilos Cave, near Agia Marina
Object from Yerospilos Cave, near Agia Marina
Mosaic floors (3C) from private homes in Chania
Mosaic floors (3C) from private homes in Chania
Minoan pottery in the Archaeological Museum of Chania
Minoan pottery in the Archaeological Museum of Chania
Cups from Kastelli of Chania
Cups from Kastelli of Chania
Jar from the Mamelaukou Cave, Kydonia with Linear B Script
Jar from the Mamelaukou Cave, Kydonia with Linear B Script
Cycladic style vase, Museum of Chania
Cycladic style vase, Museum of Chania
The garden of the former Venetian church of San Francesco, Chania
The garden of the former Venetian church of San Francesco, Chania
Mosaic floor from a private home, in the museum of Chania
Mosaic floor from a private home, in the museum of Chania
The portal of the Zangaroli mansion that stood in the Kastelli, Chania
The portal of the Zangaroli mansion that stood in the Kastelli, Chania
Minoan Sarcophagus in the Chania museum
Minoan Sarcophagus in the Chania museum
The Sindrivani fountain in the museum garden, Chania
The Sindrivani fountain in the museum garden, Chania
Neolithic finds in the Chania museum
Neolithic finds in the Chania museum
Mosaic floor from a private home now in the museum of Chania
Mosaic floor from a private home now in the museum of Chania
Minoan pottery in the Archaeological Museum of Chania
Minoan pottery in the Archaeological Museum of Chania
The Venetian church of San Francesco, the Archaeological Museum of Chania
The Venetian church of San Francesco, the Archaeological Museum of Chania
Roman statue, 250 AD
Roman statue, 250 AD
Glass from Chania area, Greco-Roman period
Glass from Chania area, Greco-Roman period
Archaic-style clay figurine from Axos
Archaic-style clay figurine from Axos
The Venetian church of San Francesco, the Archaeological Museum of Chania
The Venetian church of San Francesco, the Archaeological Museum of Chania
 
Visit the area of the sight: Chania
Synonyms and related links Platia Sindrivaniou :
Sandrivani Square, Chania
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