A Summary of Minoan Crete
The Minoan civilization had long been forgotten until Sir Arthur Evans (a British archaeologist) discovered the ruins in the first decade of the twentieth century. Evans named this ancient civilization after King Minos of Crete. We have no idea what the Minoans actually called themselves. The years of Crete are divided into these four sections: Prepalatial (from 3000–1900 BC), Protopalatial (1900–1700 BC), Neopalatial (1700–1400 BC), and Postpalatial (1400–1150 BC). The first people to inhabit Crete were recorded to have lived in c. 6000 BC. This is before the Prepalatial period. By 3000 BC, Crete had grown to host significant towns and its maritime trade flourished. This is the Prepalatial Period. The first palaces were built in the Protopalatial period. Historians believe that with the coming of these palaces, the first kings or rulers of different districts arose. These palaces would be destroyed somewhere around 1700 BC. The Minoan civilization entered the golden age of Minoan civilization in the years of 1700–1400 BC. In these years, the palaces that had been destroyed were rebuilt and were grander than ever. This was the Neopalatial period. Although we know little of Minoan religion, we do know that bulls were very important to their religion. We see in the art of the Minoans horns and the likeness of bulls. There is also reason to believe that woman were very important in the religion as well. Some prominent female figures may have been worshiped as goddesses. Minoan trade networks extended across the eastern Mediterranean Sea and the Aegean Sea. Because of their extensive trade routes, the Minoan were very influential on other nations. The Minoan civilization collapsed over the next few centuries. To this day, scholars still debate how the Minoan civilization fell.