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The palace found at Malia is the third largest palace of Minoan Crete after Knossos and Phaistos. It occupies 7500 square meters at the edge of a fertile valley near Hersonissos in Northern Crete. The palaceΆΆs proximity to the sea was obviously important in the development of the site into a cultural hub for its ancient inhabitants. It was first built around 1900 BC, a time of feverish development for the entire island population. It subsequently followed the same cycle as the other palaces of the time, and it was destroyed by unknown reasons around 1650 before it was immediately rebuilt.
The ruins at the site today reflect this second rebirth of the palace on the ruins of the old one, and the excavations which persist to our day reveal a place of significant economic and political activity which lasted until its final destruction by fire in 1450 BC. The architecture of this Neopalatial palace roughly follows the plan originally laid by the destroyed palace. A large central court yard is surrounded by storage rooms to the east, the theater and several crypts and corridors to the West, and the main entrance to the south. Along the lines with other Minoan palaces, there is a smaller courtyard to the west where modern visitors normally enter the ruins, adjacent to the eight circular granaries.
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