In January 1959, when a trench was being dug in order to lay a water pipe in connection with the building of an orphanage (Κέντρον βρεφῶν “Ἤ Μητέρα”) on the south edge of Ayios Ioannis between Knossos and Herakleion a sinking of the ground suggested the presence of a collapsed tomb chamber. As the site lay within the Knossos area, Dr. St. Alexiou, Ephor of Antiquities for Crete, kindly invited the School to make trials there during the course of their excavations at Knossos in the summer of 1959.
The tomb which these trials revealed proved to be Minoan, and assignable to the L.M. II period, to judge from the remains of a couple of clay vases, a stemmed goblet (A.1) and an alabastron (A.2), which had evidently belonged with the original burial or burials. The deep-cut dromos, narrow with distinctly inward leaning sides, was of a type which it is often suggested may be of Mycenaean origin. But this is disputable, and the tomb at Ayios Ioannis appears to be as early as, if not earlier than, any of the tombs with this type of dromos on the Greek mainland. At Mycenae itself tombs with dromoi like this are not attested before L.H. III. On the other hand both at Mycenae and at Knossos there are tombs with shorter dromoi whose sides lean inwards, and some of these tombs may be earlier in date. Tomb 529 at Mycenae, with a short dromos whose sides lean markedly inwards, is assignable to L.H. I–II.