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MYTHS OF CRETE & PRE-HELLENIC EUROPE

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Author Topic: MYTHS OF CRETE & PRE-HELLENIC EUROPE  (Read 5646 times)
Skinwalker
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« Reply #750 on: February 27, 2010, 12:16:39 pm »

 should be king, Minos, whose party prevailed, drove Sarpedon and his followers into banishment. The exiles sailed to Asia, and landed on the Milyan territory. Milyas was the ancient name of the country now inhabited by the Lycians; the Milyæ of the present day were, in those times, called Solymi. So long as Sarpedon reigned, his followers kept the name which they brought with them from Crete, and were called Termilæ, as the Lycians still are by those who

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« Reply #751 on: February 27, 2010, 12:16:50 pm »

live in their neighbourhood. . . . Their customs are partly Cretan, partly Carian." 1 Herodotus also noted that the Lycians took "the mother's and not the father's name"--an interesting and perhaps significant fact when we consider the prominent part taken in social life by the Cretan women.
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« Reply #752 on: February 27, 2010, 12:17:02 pm »

That the destruction of Knossos was due to internal revolt, which may or may not have received outside aid, is highly probable. It was rebuilt at the beginning of the Middle Minoan III Period, but before its rulers had attained to the full height of their power a long era of prosperity was in store for the smaller towns. Gournia, Zakro, Psyra, and Palaikastro began to be important trading centres before 1700 B.C., and ere the second palace of Phæstos was erected. It was after the Knossian palace was remodelled that these towns were destroyed.
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« Reply #753 on: February 27, 2010, 12:17:12 pm »

Ere the Middle Minoan III Period had drawn to a close the Hyksos invaders had overrun Egypt, and the Hittites, Mitannians, and Kassites were in ascendancy in Mesopotamia and Anatolia. Commercial relations between Crete and Egypt were no doubt hampered for a time, but they appear to have been resumed again. Perhaps the island kingdom received refugees from the Delta region. These may have introduced the art of writing on papyrus with a pen, which came into practice before the beginning of the Late Minoan I Period.
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« Reply #754 on: February 27, 2010, 12:17:31 pm »

The Late Minoan I Period endured for about two centuries (c. 1700-1500 B.C.). Trade became exceedingly brisk, and Gournia, Palaikastro, and eastern towns reached their highest development. The fact that Zakro became important suggests intimate relations with Egypt. Sir Arthur Evans has discovered at Knossos an alabastron lid bearing the personal name of one of the late Hyksos
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« Reply #755 on: February 27, 2010, 12:17:49 pm »

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Pharaohs, Khian, whose throne name, Seuserenra, appears on a figure of a lion found at Baghdad. A seal impression found by the same excavator in the royal villa near the palace belongs to the early part of Late Minoan I. It is of special interest because the subject is a horse which has been carried overseas in a one-masted vessel. This animal was introduced into Babylonia by the Kassites, and was called "the ass of the east". The Mitannians, who were probably allies of the Kassites, had horses and chariots, and the horse appeared in Egypt during the Hyksos era. Perhaps the successful invasion of the Hyksos was due to the use of cavalry.
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« Reply #756 on: February 27, 2010, 12:18:08 pm »

Sir Arthur Evans is of opinion that his Knossian seal impression is a record of the introduction into Crete of the thoroughbred horse. Mr. and Mrs. Hawes state, however, that they possess an Early Minoan seal stone on which a horse figures. This fact is interesting. It may not indicate that the horse was a domesticated animal, although it may have been a sacred one. The Demeter of Phigalia, as has been stated, was horse-headed. In the Palæolithic Age there were wild horses in Europe, and in one of the cave-pictures of the Aurignacian Period a man is shown beside small horses with a stave on his shoulder, suggesting that he is herding them. At this remote period the animal was freely eaten. There is no evidence that the horse was used in warfare much earlier than the Kassite Period in Babylonia, and it was certainly quite unknown in Egypt before the Hyksos Age.
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« Reply #757 on: February 27, 2010, 12:18:17 pm »

Cretan culture extended during the Late Minoan I times through the Cycladic islands. At Phylakopi, in Melos, a second city came into existence round its obsidian "factory". Cretan products were freely imported and Cretan script was in use. In one of its buildings, which may have been the palace, was found a well-preserved

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« Reply #758 on: February 27, 2010, 12:18:29 pm »

fresco showing flying fish skimming over transparent waters in which lie shells, sponges, and rocks. It was undoubtedly the work of a Cretan artist. In all probability there was a Minoan colony at Phylakopi.
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« Reply #759 on: February 27, 2010, 12:18:38 pm »

But Cretan influence was not confined to the islands. Both Mycenæ and Tiryns on the Grecian mainland were stimulated by it as early as the Middle Minoan III Period. The contents of the shaft graves of Mycenæ, which Schliemann assigned to the Homeric Age, are of Late Minoan I antiquity (c. 1500 B.C.), as are also boar-hunt frescoes recently found at Tiryns, which are distinctively Cretan, and the famous Vaphio cups with the bull-snaring scenes. The Peloponnesian colonies of Crete appear to have been
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« Reply #760 on: February 27, 2010, 12:18:50 pm »

established in the Middle Minoan III Period (c. 1800-1700 B.C.). In Bœotia there were settlements in Late Minoan I times, if not earlier, and tombs have yielded Cretan, and imitations of Cretan products, which confirm the traditions of the source of early Grecian culture, the religious mysteries, and so forth. With Cretan modes of life came Cretan modes of thought to a people who were not much advanced from the Neolithic stage of culture. It is probable that the islanders formed a military aristocracy from which sprung the kings who ruled the various important city States in pre-Homeric times.
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« Reply #761 on: February 27, 2010, 12:19:07 pm »

Pausanias 1 tells us that the lion gate of Mycenæ and the walls of Tiryns were the work of the Cyclopes who laboured for Proctus. He writes, too, with conviction of the men in ancient days who "were guests at the tables of the gods in consequence of their righteousness and piety", and adds that "those who were good clearly met with honour from the gods, and similarly those who were wicked, with wrath. The gods in those days were sometimes mortals who are still worshipped, like Aristæus, and

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« Reply #762 on: February 27, 2010, 12:19:45 pm »

Britomartis of Crete, and Hercules, the son of Alcmena, and Amphiarus, the son of Œcles, and beside them Castor and Pollux." 1 So were the ancients who believed in giants and gods identified with them.
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« Reply #763 on: February 27, 2010, 12:19:55 pm »

During the last century of the Late Minoan I Period the Hyksos were overthrown in Egypt, and the Theban Eighteenth Dynasty was established. The Cretans were known then in the Nile valley as the Keftiu, and characteristic wasp-waisted figures carrying Minoan vases were depicted in the tombs. It was during this period that the later Phæstian palace was erected.
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« Reply #764 on: February 27, 2010, 12:20:05 pm »

The Late Minoan II Period, also known as the "Palace" Period, began towards the close of the reign of Pharaoh Thothmes I, the father of Queen Hatshepsut. It lasted for about half a century, from c. 1500 till 1450 B.C. One by one the coast towns perished, the latest to survive being Palaikastro, which some identify as the ancient city port of Heleia. Some think that Palaikastro existed as late as the Late Minoan III Period, and was ruled by an independent prince.
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