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Crete and Mycenae

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Mycenae, Acropolis Lions gate. 22. Main points of the lecture ... forms of civilization in the Aegean sea were characterized by the development of ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Crete and Mycenae


1
Crete and Mycenae
2
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Aegean Bronze Ageca. 2000-1000 BCE, cfr. Gates
120
  • Minoan Crete
  • Mycenaean Greece

4
Minoan Crete and Minoan civilization
  • Expressions forged by sir Arthur Evans, first
    archaeologist who excavated at Knossos, major
    site of the island
  • Minoan adjective derived from Minos,
    mythological king of Knossos. Evans was convinced
    to have discovered the labyrinth

5
  • While Sumerian and Mesopotamian typical building
    was the temple, Minoan civilizations hallmark
    is the palace
  • Major palaces have been found at Knossos, Mallia,
    Phaistos and Kato Zagro

6
Knossos the palace of Minos
  • In 1900 Arthur Evans began to dig. His work went
    on for half a century. The results of his
    campaigns were published in four volumes
    publication The palace of Minos

7
Fresco of the Bull Leapers, Knossos partially
restored
8
  • Bull leaping ring from Knossos

9
Plan of the palace of Knossos (Gates, 123)
10
Aerial view of the palace
11
  • Arthur Evans was one of the first archaeologists
    to face the problem of organizing an
    archeological site as a place to be visited by
    specialists and turists.

12
  • He made the choice to restore the remains of the
    palace on the basis of his interpretation in
    order to permit the visitors to have a better
    understanding of the building
  • Restorations made the site easier to be read,
    attractive and spectacular, but they also made it
    difficult for the following generations of
    archaeologists to have a clear idea of the
    findings and improve the interpretation of the
    site.

13
Knossos, Throne room
14
  • The palaces, which have large central courtyards
    and a series of public rooms, acted as centres
    for the storage of surplus grain, wine, oil and
    other produce. Whoever controlled the palaces
    recorded the goods stored on clay tablets, first
    in a hieroglyphic script and later in the
    islands own syllabic writing, known to scholars
    as Linear A
  • From C. Freeman, Egypt, Greece and Rome.
    Civilizations of the Ancient Mediterranean,
    Oxford Oxford University Press 1996, 77

15
  • Surplus produce was carefully recorded and
    stored, apparently to exchange for goods from
    overseas in particular metals and stone. On seals
    are found designs of ships with sails (no galleys
    as in other civilization) and this suggest
    extensive trade.
  • From C. Freeman, Egypt, Greece and Rome.
    Civilizations of the Ancient Mediterranean,
    Oxford Oxford University Press 1996, 77

16
  • Ship Fresco, Acrotiri, Thera (Santorini island,
    Greece)

17
Akrotiri
  • Cfr. website of the Thera Foundation
  • http//www.therafoundation.org/

18
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19
Mycenae
  • Heinrich Schliemann started excavating the site
    in 1876 with the aim to find the city of
    Agamemnon
  • Acropolis (or citadel) and graves (shaft-graves
    and tholoi)

20
Site plan Mycenae (Gates 132)
21
Mycenae, Acropolis Lions gate
22
Main points of the lecture
  • First forms of civilization in the Aegean sea
    were characterized by the development of cities
  • Typical aspect of these cities were
    multifunctional palaces
  • Archaeological sources give us many informations
    on the social structure of these civilizations
    and on aspects of their culture
  • cities were probably governed by kings
  • burials in Mycenae seem to indicate that the
    basic unit of society were household and clan
  • first forms of market economy
  • religious festivals and games

23
General point for the course
  • The problem of displaying archaeological sources
    and preserving information on excavations and
    findings
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