The island of Crete was the center of Minoan civilization in Bronze-Age Greece that flourished from approximately 2200 to 1450 BCE. With a total area of 8336 square-kilometers, it is the largest of the Greek islands and the fifth largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. It is mountainous and has natural harbors. According to Homer, Crete had 90 cities... [continue reading]
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Late New-Palace period (1450 BCE) clay jug with distinctive leaf pattern, from Phaistos. (Heraklion Archaeological Museum, Crete)
The ever evolving pottery from the Minoan civilization of Bronze Age Crete (2000-1500 BCE) demonstrates, perhaps better than any other medium, not only the Minoan joy in animal, sea and plant life but also their delight in flowing, naturalistic shapes and design. Kamares Style Following on from the pre-palatial styles of Vasiliki (with surfaces... [continue reading]
Stone rhyton (libation vase) in the form of a bull's head from the Minoan site of Knossos, New-Palace period (1600-1500 BCE), Heraklion Archaeological Museum, Crete.
Faience figurine of the Minoan Snake Goddess - her dominion was over nature and fertility. New-Palace period (1600 BCE). Heraklion Archaeological Museum, Crete.
Craftsmen of the Minoan civilization centred on the island of Crete produced stone vessels from the early Bronze Age (c. 2500 BCE) using a wide variety of stone types which were laboriously carved out to create vessels of all shapes, sizes and function. The craft continued for a millennium and vessels were of such quality that they found their way... [continue reading]
New-Palace period (1500-1450 BCE) Cretan Clay askos with 'Marine Style' decoration, (Heraklion Archaeological Museum, Crete)
The Mycenaean civilization flourished in the late Bronze Age, from the 15th to the 13th century BCE and extended its influence not only throughout the Peloponnese in Greece but also across the Aegean, in particular, on Crete and the Cycladic islands. The Mycenaeans were influenced by the earlier Minoan civilization (2000-1450 BCE) which... [continue reading]
The partially reconstructed wing of the palace of Knossos c. 1500 BCE.
The Palace at Knossos, Crete, (c. 1500 BCE). A restored upper-level lightwell.