Western Civilization, lesson 10 essay.

1. Minoan Crete. The history of the Minoan Crete is vague due to lack of archeological evidence.  But it has been proven that this civilization existed and archeologists have found evidence that leads to insights into their civilization.  The Minoan civilization developed and ruled the island of Crete from approximately 3600 to 1400 B.C..  The civilization was lost for a period of time, until the late 19th century, when it was “re-discovered” by British archeologist, Sir Arthur Evans.

This civilization is named after a figure from Greek legend “King Minos of Crete,”  Sir Evans gave them the name “Minoan Crete” because there is no documentation on what they called themselves.  Scholars are unsure of many aspects of this civilization because of lack of literature that present day scholars are able to decipher.

We know little about their religion, but from the art and drawings of the civilization, it is obvious that bulls were of significance.  It is believed that the Minoans were a peaceful civilization, there is no archeological or liturgical evidence that the civilization engaged in wars.  However, evidence was found that leads us to believe that the Minoans offered human sacrifices.  Human sacrifice was not peaceful, but it was found in almost all ancient civilizations.

2. Mycenaean Greece.
Mycenaean Greece represents the first advanced civilization in mainland Greece.  Mycenaean civilization originated and evolved from the society and culture influenced by the Minoan Crete.  Like the Minoans, there is still a lot that remains mysterious about this civilization that scholars just don’t know.  Mycenaean Greece refers to the entire civilization of Greece at that time period from 1600-1100 B.C. which was very much different from the civilization Greece would later become.  The name Mycenaean comes from the name of the city Mycenae in the north eastern section of the Pelopenniasianns.

It was believed that Greek history began in 800 B.C., scholars did not believe there was anything historically recorded prior to that.  In the 19th century, a German archeologist, Heinrich Schliemann was unsatisfied and was determined to find proof of Greek history prior to 800 B.C..  First, he successfully discovers the city of Troy, and later discovers the Mycenaean civilization, in an attempt to find proof of a Greek civilization earlier than 800 B.C..

Mycenaean Greece appears to have been divided into independent cities, each city ruled by a king.  Evidence suggests that these were very war-like civilizations unlike the Minoans.  It is proven that the civilization traveled and traded widely, this can be found through the discoveries of their art in different civilizations throughout the world.  And finally, sometime around 1100 B.C., the civilization collapsed, there are competing theories as to why, but it still remains mystery.

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