Minoan society archaeological and written evidence
The standard of living was high. This demonstrates the importance of farming as an artistic motif. With the palaces came the development of writing, probably as a result of the new record-keeping demands of the palace economy. Figure 2: Image 1: Minoan Religious Procession. The Minoans on Crete employed two types of scripts, a hieroglyphic script whose source of inspiration was probably Egypt, and a linear script, Linear A, perhaps inspired by the cuneiform of the eastern Mediterranean. Over several hours on May 19 Boyd collected a few potsherds and located the tops of several ancient walls, enough to convince her it was worth sending a team of workmen to the site the next morning. The city of Akrotiri on the island of Thera modern-day Santorini is one of the best preserved of these Minoan settlements. The lotus, symbolic of life and rebirth was also linked to sexuality in ancient Egyptian culture. Despite its abrupt ending, the influence of Crete survived. They also cultivated grapes , figs and olives , grew poppies for seed and perhaps opium. The faience figurines of the Snake Goddess and her Votaries are significant in the many layers of symbolism it represents.
Figure 6: Image 1. Major palaces were built at Knossos and Mallia in the northern part of Crete, at Phaistos in the south, and at Zakros in the east. Cretan fashions became very popular in the eastern Mediterranean.
The scripts are found on sun-dried clay tablets that are mostly administrative records; on ritual objects such as miniature double axes and stone libation tables; and on pottery and rings.
Eteocretan inscriptions are separated from Linear A by about a millennium, and it is thus unknown if Eteocretan represents a descendant of the Minoan language.
Built to exploit the local stocks of murex—a mollusk highly prized for its purple ink used for dyeing cloth—Kastri is purely Minoan in its urban planning. The other script, called Linear B, evolved from Linear A. The fresco known as the Sacred Grove at Knossos depicts women facing left, flanked by trees. Linear B tablets indicate the importance of orchards figs , olives and grapes in processing crops for "secondary products". The Phaistos Disc features a unique pictorial script. Boyd uncovered dozens of houses, cobbled streets, a small palace, a cemetery, and countless bronze tools and weapons, stone and clay vessels, and personal and religious artifacts. Graham, J. With the palaces came the development of writing, probably as a result of the new record-keeping demands of the palace economy. Yet it was not only in their myths that the ancient Greeks spoke of Crete. That hypothesis has now been called into question as recent studies of ice core samples push the Thera eruption further into the past. Of all the sites in the prehistoric Aegean, Gournia gives the best idea of what a Minoan town looked like, which Harriet Boyd understood after just three years of working there. These finds demonstrate that, early on, the Minoans were excellent sailors who were actively trading with Egypt and the Near East, exchanging their cloth, timber, foodstuffs, and, likely, olive oil, for copper, tin, gold, silver, and ivory.
Vol I. Another symbolism of fertility and life from Egypt reproduced on Crete was the many statuettes found of a cow suckling her calf, being similar in ideology to the Egyptian goddess Hathor as mother of a king.
The western magazines were used for the making and storage of pottery as seen by the evidence of pottery wheels and kilns, as well as workshops for master craftsmen for seal making and gemstone engraving plus luxury items possibly produced as trade items. From the Ashes Minoan civilization declined by the late 15th century B. Shaw, M. If the Mycenaeans were not responsible for this destruction, they certainly took advantage of the events—administrative records from this period are written in Linear B, the script of Mycenaean Greeks. Over several hours on May 19 Boyd collected a few potsherds and located the tops of several ancient walls, enough to convince her it was worth sending a team of workmen to the site the next morning. According to Watrous, a normal Minoan family home would have had four to five pithoi large storage jars filled with food to survive a year, but at Gournia few of the houses had pithoi at all, suggesting that inhabitants were bartering for their food in exchange for the goods they manufactured there. These buildings were strategically placed in a higher central position in relation to their surrounding settlement. From B.
The palaces were equipped with elaborate staircases and sophisticated drainage and plumbing, and were also decorated with brightly colored frescoes, some of the most accomplished examples of painting in ancient Greece, depicting primarily scenes from nature and daily life.
Evans excavated several of these structures, including the magnificent Palace of Knossos, seat of the legendary King Minos.
This author will propose a hypothesis that Minoan civilization was directly related through heritage to the Egyptian race, while some aspects of their culture were modified to accommodate the climatic and geographical differences encountered whereby the isolation created an elitist society, while other aspects of their previous culture were completely abandoned.
Bull imagery saturates Cretan art, appearing in jewelry, ceramics, sculpture, and painting. From the material he excavated at Knossos, Evans devised a chronological scheme consisting of nine periods for Minoan civilization on Crete.
Minoan boats as depicted in their artwork were very similar to the boats given as tomb offerings as seen in figure 6.
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