Clumsy Tourist Trips and Smashes 4,000-Year-Old Greek Vase

The visitor smashed a 4,000-year-old Minoan vase similar to this one. Photo: studyblue.com

Last Saturday, a hapless museum-goer was taking in the ancient exhibits at the Heraklion Archaeological Museum on the Greek island of Crete, when she suddenly tripped and fell. In doing so she, grabbed onto a 4,000 year-old Minoan vase to break her fall and shamefully smashed the prehistoric artifact, the Daily Mail reports. (See Cy Twombly Sculpture Accidentally Smashed at Menil Collection).

The Greek Culture Ministry said the culprit suffered minor injuries to her legs, while the vase on the other hand, was completely destroyed. Restorers at the institution are optimistic, however. After assessing the damage and sending it to be repaired, they have declared that the vase could be back on display as soon as today. (See Selfie-Taker Smashes Priceless Historic Italian Statue of Hercules).

The accident happened in the Heraklion Archaeological Museum, which houses several Cretan treasures Photo: Expedia

The accident happened in the Heraklion Archaeological Museum, which houses several Cretan treasures
Photo: Expedia

The same vase was discovered by archaeologists bearing traces of an ancient restoration, suggesting that it was damaged by some clumsy Cretan 4,000 years ago.

The Minoan people inhabited Crete from 2000 to 1500 BCE. The civilization left behind several settlements, tombs, and cemeteries, now much visited ruins. Most artifacts discovered on the island have ended up in the Heraklion museum.

Many of the artifacts in the museum come from the ruins of Knossos, which is considered Europe's oldest city Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Many of the artifacts in the museum come from the ruins of Knossos, which is considered Europe’s oldest city
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Whilst museums do their best to keep artifacts safe, it seems they can’t always stop human nature, as there have been numerous recent examples of visitors and staff inadvertently damaging artworks (see Artwork Damaged at Pérez Art Museum During Art Basel Opening, King Tut Damaged in Botched Repair Attempt and Botched Repair Ruins Priceless Roman Mosaics in Turkey).


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