Virginia Woolf in Tiryns 1906

Virginia Woolf in Tiryns 1906 2000 972 REVICTO

Virginia Woolf
Diary [visit to Greece 1906]
Sept. 24, 1906


“[Tiryns] is simply a pile of old stones, till you come to look closely. But then it has meaning & even beauty. The Greeks chose their sites well; here the palace was built on a flat table land, gazing up into the hills… The Homeric palace hummed with heat. It was enough to impress one more than all guide books; but a foundation, solid, like an English Castle, only ‘pre-historic’.”

[From Tiryns to Epidaurus]

“We are now in the land of ruins & prehistoric remains; there are no statues, and no temples so that a different kind of interest is required. We drove for 20 miles today for instance (& I write, stupidly, with a street in its evening clamour beneath me) to Epidaurus. The country when you penetrate it within the bare line of the coast, is strange and beautiful [… ]Three sad jades drew our carriage the 20 miles; We passed many flocks of goats, many sumpter mules, many carts laden with wine skins. But there were only two small villages, & there was no sign of our
snug English civilization.”

Featured Image: Great Tower of Tiryns, Greece. Birthplace of Hercules. Copyright 1897 by Underwood & Underwood. Courtesy of ELIA/MIET.

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Representations of Modern Greece
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