Snake Goddess
of Knossos

With serpents in her upraised hands, crowned with a panther, and her breasts proudly bared, she is the most famous example of Cretan art. Her powerful eyes foreshadow the ecstatic stare of later Kore figures.

Priestess or Goddess? in a ceremonial context where the priestess calls up the divinity, the distinction may not be meaningful.

She belongs to a global pattern of goddesses holding aloft snakes: Iran, Yoruba, Sweden, Yucatan, and many more examples.

the famous snake goddess

This second faience statuette was found in a chamber under the Knossos temple. The serpents coil her her arms and around her groin. Again her eyes with that far-away look which is at the same time deeply present.

another faience snake goddess


This figurine is a forgery, but still circulates as an authentic example of Cretan art. Not only the lack of craftsmanship but the modern look of the face give the fraud away. It didn't pass the C-14 dating test either.

ivory and gold statuette

One of the famous "snake tubes" which have been found in Crete, Greece, Aegean islands and the Levant (west Asia). This Cretan example has the "horns of consecration" and a long spout for pouring libation.


ceramic snake tube

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