Nearer the Libyan Sea than Phaestus, a small palace or royal villa was discovered by Halbherr and excavated by the Italian Mission.
The great palaces now excavated at Cnossus and Phaestus, as well as the royal villa of Hagia Triada, exhibit the successive phases of a brilliant primitive civilization which had already attained mature development by the date of the XIIth Egyptian dynasty.
The founders of Megara Hyblaea settled here temporarily, according to Thucydides, in the winter of 729-728 B.C., but it seems to have remained almost if not entirely uninhabited until the Athenians used it as a naval station in their attack on Syracuse early in 414 B.C. A number of tombs were excavated in 1894, containing objects belonging to a transitional stage between the second and third Sicel period, attributable roughly to r000-goo B.C., and with a certain proportion of Mycenean importations.
In width, interspersed with small chambers, all excavated at successive levels, in the they reach seven storeys), and communicate with one another by stairs cut out of the living rock.
The other desert regions of Egypt are elevated stony plateaus, which are diversified by extensively excavated valleys and oases, and in which sand frequently plays quite a subordinate part.
There is a gunnery establishment in the harbour on Whale Island, the area of which has been increased to nearly 90 acres by the accretion of material excavated from the dockyard extension works, and various barracks including those of the royal marine artillery at Eastney, beyond Southsea.
Drainage channels are provided, usually along the main haulage roads, by which the water flows to a sump excavated at the pump shaft.
On some of these channels deep gorges were eroded heading in temporary cataracts which exceeded Niagara in height but not in breadth; the pools excavated by the plunging waters at the head of the gorges are now occupied by little lakes.
To left and right, and at the back, dormitories are excavated opening on to this hall, and in the centre of the back, facing the entrance, an image of the Buddha usually stands in a niche.
If a family vault was required, or a burial chapel for a martyr or person of distinction, a small square room was excavated by the side of the gallery and communicating with it.