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Classics Ancient Crete
by
Angelos Chaniotis

Introduction

The island of Crete holds a special position in classical studies, primarily as the birthplace of the earliest “high culture” in Europe: the Minoan civilization of the Bronze Age. But in addition to the artistic and cultural achievements of the “Minoans,” Crete is the only Greek region whose history can be studied on the basis of written sources (Egyptian hieroglyphic documents, Linear B texts, Greek literary sources and inscriptions), almost continually from c. 1400 BCE to Late Antiquity. It is the first Greek area where script was used (Cretan hieroglyphics, Linear A, and Linear B); and being an island with a diverse landscape, in relative proximity to mainland Greece but strategically located in the center of the eastern Mediterranean, it offers interesting paradigms for the study of ancient political organization, society, and culture in changing historical contexts. Understandably, Minoan Crete has been studied more intensely than later periods of Cretan history. This is not a bibliography of Minoan archaeology and art history. Although it attempts to cover Cretan history from the processes that led to the appearance of the palaces (c. 2000 BCE) to Late Antiquity (c. 5th century CE), it places more emphasis on the periods of Cretan history for which written sources exist. This bibliography does not always follow the traditional periodization of Greek history and art history because it corresponds to the periods of Cretan history. The Cretan “Renaissance” (c. 900–630), roughly the Geometric, Orientalizing, and Early Archaic periods of art history, is taken here as a single period, in which Crete was a pioneer in art and culture. A major change occurred around 630 BCE: trade and the arts did not disappear but lost their innovative power, and Cretan institutions seem to petrify; the Late Archaic and Classical periods are therefore taken as a single unit (c. 630–c. 336 BCE). In the remaining centuries Crete kept pace with the rest of the Greek world, first integrated in the Hellenistic world (c. 336–67 BCE) and then in the Roman Empire (67 BCE–284 CE); finally, Late Antiquity (c. 284–mid-7th century CE) is clearly defined through Diocletian’s reforms and the advance of Christianity, and the beginning of the Arab raids.

General Overviews

Because of the great length and complexity of Cretan history and archaeology in Antiquity, hardly any general overviews cover the entire timespan from the Minoan period to Late Antiquity. Pendlebury 1939 covers the entire period, with an emphasis on Bronze Age Crete, but the archaeological discoveries of the past seventy years have dramatically changed our knowledge. Chaniotis 2004 gives a very short outline of historical developments in the entire period, for a general audience. Studying the history of the Cretan landscape, Rackham and Moody 1996 also illuminates the interdependence of landscape and history from prehistoric times to the 20th century. Myers, et al. 1992 is enormously useful as a reference work for the most important sites and, indirectly, for Cretan archaeology. Willetts 1965 also covers the entire period, but is out of date because of recent discoveries. Davaras 1989 can be consulted on most questions of Cretan history and archaeology.

  • Boardman, John. 1961. The Cretan Collection in Oxford: The Dictaean Cave and Iron Age Crete. Oxford: Clarendon Press.

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    Publication of the Cretan Collection in the Ashmolean Museum, with finds from the cave at Psychro and the Idaean Cave (Minoan-Geometric periods); at the same time a good introduction to the history of Cretan art, from the Minoan to the Late Archaic period (see especially pp. 129–159).

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  • Chaniotis, Angelos. 2004. Das antike Kreta. Munich: Beck.

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    Covers in 128 pages the historical development of Crete from the Early Bronze Age to Late Antiquity; written for a general audience.

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  • Davaras, Costis. 1989. Guide to Cretan antiquities. 2d ed. Athens, Greece:Eptalofos.

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    Concise encyclopedia of Cretan history and archaeology; useful for a general audience. German updated translation by Wolfgang Schürmann, Führer zu den Altertümern Kretas (Athens, Greece:Eptalofos, 2003).

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  • Myers, J. Wilson, Eleanor Emlen Myers, and Gerald Cadogan, eds. 1992. The aerial atlas of ancient Crete. Berkeley: Univ. of California Press; London: Thames and Hudson.

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    This volume presents aerial photographs of a good selection of important archaeological sites of all periods, with information on their history and basic bibliography; extremely useful as a reference.

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  • Pendlebury, J. D. S. 1939. The archaeology of Crete: An introduction. London: Methuen.

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    Although reflecting the state of research in prewar Crete, this remains an unsurpassed introduction to the study of Cretan history and archaeology; well-written, methodologically inspiring, and based on intimate knowledge of the Cretan landscape and the history of Crete from prehistory to modern times. Reprinted London: Methuen, 1979.

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  • Rackham, Oliver, and Jennifer A. Moody. 1996. The making of the Cretan landscape. Manchester, UK: Manchester Univ. Press.

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    The best introduction to the Cretan landscape, its diversity, its history, and its various uses from prehistoric times to today; written for a general audience; obligatory reading for anyone interested in Cretan history.

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  • Willetts, R. F. 1965. Ancient Crete: A social history from early times until the Roman occupation. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.

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    An attempt to reconstruct the structure and history of Cretan society from Minoan times onward; readable, but more reliable for the Classical and Hellenistic periods than for the earlier periods. Reprinted 2007.

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Journals

Our knowledge of ancient Crete continually advances thanks to the discovery of new sources, especially archaeological finds and inscriptions. Often such finds are first presented in journals. In addition to several journals dedicated generally to field archaeology and art history, which often publish articles concerning ancient Crete, there are also several journals exclusively dedicated to Crete. Among those published in Crete, Kretika Chronika was very influential until the mid-1960s. Creta Antica and Cretan Studies should also be consulted. The journals Kadmos and Minos specialize in early scripts and often host articles on the Cretan scripts. Reports of Greek excavations in Crete are published in Praktika tes en Athenais Archaiologikes Hetaireias and in Archaiologikon Deltion.

  • Aegean Archaeology. 1994–. Warsaw, Poland: Polish Academy of Sciences.

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    International journal with emphasis on Minoan and Early Iron Age Crete.

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  • Archaiologikon Deltion. 1915–1935, 1961–. Athens, Greece: Ministry of Culture (earlier, Ministry of Education).

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    A journal in Greek that presents (in recent years with delays of up to ten years) the reports of the local Antiquities Departments of the General Directorate of Antiquities; informative concerning new finds, although it is frustrating to know that many of the finds mentioned here will be published with great delay, if ever.

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  • Creta Antica. 2000–. Padua, Italy: Bottega d’Erasmo.

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    Published by the Centro di Archeologia Cretese of the Università di Catania, it hosts articles on every period of ancient Cretan history and archaeology.

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  • Cretan Studies. 1988–2003. Amsterdam: Hakkert.

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    This title appeared on irregular basis (nine issues in total) until 2003; it has occasionally hosted interesting articles, especially for post-Minoan Crete.

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  • Journal of Hellenic Studies. 1954–. London: Society for the Promotion of Hellenic Studies.

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    The “Archaeological Reports” section provides very useful brief presentations of major archaeological discoveries. This title appears on an annual basis and is the best source of information for recent developments in Cretan archaeology.

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  • Kadmos. 1962–. Berlin: de Gruyter.

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    Dedicated to the study of early scripts, including Linear B.

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  • Kretika Chronika. 1947–1973 and 1986–1990. Herakleion, Crete: Hetaireia Kretikon Meleton.

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    In the 1950s and 1960s one of the leading publication organs for Cretan studies (including studies of Byzantine, Venetian, and modern Crete); it also included reports on archaeological finds. Other journals published in Crete (Kretike Hestia, Kretologia) are less accessible and do not appear regularly.

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  • Minos. 1951–. Salamanca, Spain: Universidad de Salamanca, Seminario de Filología Clásica.

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    Originally a journal of classical studies, after the intensification of studies on the Linear B documents it became one of the leading publication organs for the study of Mycenaean philology, regularly hosting studies on the economy and society of Mycenaean Crete.

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  • Praktika tes en Athenais Archaiologikes Hetaireias. 1837–. Athens, Greece: Archaeological Society at Athens.

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    Publication organ of the Athens Archaeological Society, which has conducted several important excavations on Crete (Amnisos, Archanes, Idaean Cave, Symi Viannou, Zakros, Zominthos, etc.); it annually presents relatively detailed reports on the results of the excavations (in Greek); very important for Cretan archaeology.

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Series

Several series of publications place emphasis on Crete, its culture and history. Aegeum is a leading series in Minoan and Mycenaean studies. Études Crétoises presents the results of French archaeological and historical research on Crete. Incunabula Graeca is important for the study of Mycenaean documents. Sheffield Studies in Aegean Archaeology has produced volumes primarily on the earliest periods of Cretan archaeology.

  • Aegeum. 1987–. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège.

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    This series specializes in Aegean (i.e., Minoan and Mycenaean) archaeology. In addition to the proceedings of the International Aegean Conference (see Congresses), it publishes books on a variety of subjects relating to Minoan and Mycenaean Crete, many of which are presented in the relevant sections of this bibliography; it should always be consulted for research on Minoan Crete.

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    • Études Crétoises. 1922–. Paris: de Boccard.

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      Established in 1922 by the French School of Archaeology in Athens, this series has published many important books on all periods of ancient Crete (archaeology, numismatics, epigraphy, linguistics, and history). Several volumes available online.

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      • Incunabula Graeca. 1961–. Rome: Istituto di Studi sulle Civiltà dell’Egeo e del Vicino Oriente.

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        This series hosts publications primarily on Linear B documents, Mycenaean archaeology and history, with great emphasis on Crete.

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        • Sheffield Studies in Aegean Archaeology. 1998–. Sheffield, UK: Sheffield Academic Press.

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          Important for the study of early Cretan archaeology (Neolithic, Early Bronze Age).

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          Congresses

          International congresses of Cretan studies (Diethnes Kretologiko Synedrio) have taken place in Crete every five years since 1961. Their proceedings (Pepragmena 1961–) are an invaluable source of information on both new discoveries and current research trends. The regular International Aegean Conference 1988– focuses on Minoan Crete and Mycenaean Greece.

          • International Aegean Conference (Rencontre Égéenne Internationale).

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            Annual International Aegean Conferences, dedicated to the prehistoric Aegean (Minoan Crete ad Mycenaean Greece), have taken place since 1988, organized by the Université de Liège. Their proceedings are published in the series Aegeum (see Series). These conferences have so far treated, inter alia, the following subjects: Bronze Age iconography (1992; Aegeum 8), society and state in the Aegean Bronze Age (1994; Aegeum 12), war (1998; Aegeum 19), the presence of Aegeans in the central and eastern Mediterranean (2004; Aegeum 25), craftsmen, craftswomen and craftsmanship (1996; Aegeum 16), systems of measurement (2003; Aegeum 24), and deities and religion in the Aegean Bronze Age (2000; Aegeum 22).

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            • Pepragmena tou Diethnous Kretologikou Synedriou (Proceedings of the International Congress of Cretan Studies). 1961–. Herakleion, Crete: Hetaireia Kretikon Historikon Meleton.

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              Since 1961, eleven international congresses of Cretan studies have taken place (1961, Herakleion; 1966, Chania; 1971, Rethymnon; 1976, Herakleion; 1981, Agios Nikolaos; 1986, Chania; 1991, Rethymnon; 1996, Herakleion; 2001, Elounda; 2006, Chania). Their proceedings contain articles in many languages, which cover all aspects of Cretan history and culture from prehistory to modern times; many important finds have been presented for the first time in these congresses. They should always be consulted as an invaluable pool of information, especially for excavations and archaeological finds.

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            Sources

            Our knowledge of Cretan history and culture is based on a large and very diverse corpus of sources: archaeological sources for all periods, Linear B documents for the 14th–13th centuries BCE, Egyptian texts for the Minoan period, literary sources from Homer onward, inscriptions from the 8th century onward, and coins from the 5th century onward.

            Archaeological Sources

            It is not possible to list all types of archaeological sources, which range from pottery and architectural remains to seals, jewelry, weapons, and sculpture. Bibliography on the main archaeological sources is presented in Sites and Surveys in the section Regional Studies. Pendlebury 1939 remains a very good introduction to the archaeology of Crete. Schiering 1976 and Myers, et al. 1992 cover a good selection of important excavations. Boardman 1961 gives a good overview of artistic development and of main types of finds. For the history of archaeological research on Crete, one should consult the relevant publications of the foreign archaeological schools that have conducted excavations there (British, Huxley 2000; French, Tiré and van Effenterre 1978; German, Matz 1951; Italian, Di Vita, et al. 1984 and Pernier and Banti 1947).

            • Boardman, John. 1961. The Cretan Collection in Oxford: The Dictaean Cave and Iron Age Crete. Oxford: Clarendon Press.

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              Publication of the Cretan Collection in the Ashmolean Museum, with finds from the cave at Psychro and the Idaean Cave (Minoan-Geometric periods); at the same time a good introduction to the history of Cretan art, from the Minoan to the Late Archaic period (see especially pp. 129–159).

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            • Di Vita, Antonino, Vincenzo La Rosa, and Maria Antonietta Rizzo, eds. 1984. Creta antica: Cento anni di archeologia italiana (1884–1984). Rome: Di Luca.

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              Overview of the activities of Italian archaeologists on Crete (1884–1984), especially in Gortyn, Lebena, Phaistos, Aghia Triada, Prinias, Arkades, and Nerokourou.

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            • Huxley, Davina, ed. 2000. Cretan quests: British explorers, excavators and historians. London: British School at Athens.

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              Collection of essays dedicated to British archaeological and historical research in Crete (1900–c. 1990), especially in Knossos; very informative for the range of archaeological research and the transformation of the archaeological interests in the course of the 20th century.

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            • Matz, Friedrich, ed. 1951. Forschungen auf Kreta 1942. Berlin: de Gruyter.

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              German archaeologists were active in Crete only during the German occupation in World War II; their brief research led to significant discoveries, especially in Aptera and in the sanctuary of Diktynna in western Crete.

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            • Myers, J. Wilson, Eleanor Emlen Myers, and Gerald Cadogan, eds. 1992. The aerial atlas of ancient Crete. Berkeley: Univ. of California Press; London: Thames and Hudson.

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              This volume presents aerial photographs of a good selection of important archaeological sites of all periods with information on their history and a basic bibliography; extremely useful as a reference.

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            • Pendlebury, J. D. S. 1939. The archaeology of Crete: An introduction. London: Methuen.

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              Although reflecting the state of research in prewar Crete, this remains an unsurpassed introduction to the study of Cretan history and archaeology; well-written, methodologically inspiring, and based on intimate knowledge of the Cretan landscape and the history of Crete from prehistory to modern times. Reprinted London: Methuen, 1979.

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            • Pernier, Luigi, and Luisa Banti. 1947. Guida degli scavi itialiani in Creta. Rome: Libreria dello Stato.

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              Useful summary of the results of Italian excavations in Crete (including Phaistos and Gortyn).

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            • Schiering, Wolfgang. 1976. Funde auf Kreta. Frankfurt am Main, Germany: Musterschmidt.

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              A selection of important excavations, primarily of the Minoan period (Knossos, Kato Zakros, Mallia, Nirou Chani, Amnisos, Tylissos, Cave of Kamares, Phaistos, Aghia Triada); very useful for a first orientation; accessible to non-specialists.

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            • Tiré, Claire, and Henri van Effenterre. 1978. Guide des fouilles françaises en Crète. Paris: de Boccard.

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              Overview of the results of the French excavations in Crete (especially in the Minoan place and town of Mallia and in the cities of Dreros and Lato).

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            Linear B Documents

            The “Minoan” Cretans used various scripts from c. 2000 BCE, but only the texts in the so-called Linear B script, written in an early form of Greek, can yet be read and understood. These documents, written on clay tablets, provide information concerning place names, the cult of gods with Greek names, administration, social structure (elite warriors, landowners, slaves), army, and economy. Chadwick 1990 gives an account of the decipherment of Linear B and a good introduction. Duhoux and Morpurgo Davies 2008 is the best and most current reference work. Ventris and Chadwick 1973 provides a good selection of texts. See also Minoan and Mycenaean Crete.

            • Chadwick, John. 1990. The decipherment of Linear B. 2d ed. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

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              Originally written in 1959, this is a fascinating account of the decipherment of Linear B and a readable introduction to the content of the documents from Knossos (Crete) and Pylos (Peloponnese).

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            • Chadwick, John, Louis Godart, J. T. Killen, Jean-Pierre Olivier, Anna Sacconi, and Jannis A. Sakellarakis. 1986–1998. Corpus of Mycenaean inscriptions from Knossos I–IV. Cambridge, UK and Rome: Cambridge Univ. Press.

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              Collection of the Linear B tablets found in Knossos, with transcription of the texts; a reference work for advanced study of these documents.

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            • Duhoux, Yves, and Anna Morpurgo Davies, eds. 2008. A companion to Linear B: Mycenaean Greek texts and their world. Vol. 1. Louvain, Belgium: Peeters.

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              The best reference work for the content of the Linear B texts, their language, their value, and the historical contexts that produced them; very useful for students.

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            • Ventris, Michael G. F., and John Chadwick. 1973. Documents in Mycenaean Greek. 2d ed. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

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              Selection of Linear B documents from Knossos and Pylos; a representative corpus of texts, useful as an introduction.

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            Egyptian Sources

            Egyptian texts often refer to the Aegean and its populations; representations of foreign gift bearers and foreign products, especially in graves of the 18th and 19th dynasties, have been associated with Minoan Crete and Mycenaean Greece. Vercoutter 1956 was the first systematic attempt to collect and interpret this evidence. Wachsmann 1987 has updated this material, and Duhoux 2003 gives a critical appraisal of this evidence. See also External Relations in the section Minoan and Mycenaean Crete.

            • Duhoux, Yves. 2003. Des Minoens en Égypte? ‘Keftiou’ et ‘les îles au milieu du grand vert’. Louvain, Belgium: Institut Orientaliste.

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              Critical review of the Egyptian sources that refer to the “Keftiu,” usually identified as Minoan Cretans, and to the “Great Green” (the Aegean Sea?).

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            • Vercoutter, Jean. 1956. L’Égypte et le monde égéen préhellénique: Étude critique des sources égyptiennes (du début de la XVIIIe à la fin de la XIXe dynastie). Cairo, Egypt: Institut Français d’Archéologie Orientale.

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              Collection and discussion of the textual and iconographic references to Minoan Crete and Mycenaean Greece in Pharaonic Egypt (especially 17th–16th centuries BCE); the identity of the Keftiu and the nature of the contacts between Crete and Egypt are controversial subjects, but this groundbreaking work has not lost its value.

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            • Wachsmann, Shelley. 1987. Aegeans in the Theban tombs. Louvain, Belgium: Peeters.

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              Discussion of the representation of gift bearers that can be identified as representatives of the Aegean world (Minoan Crete, Mycenaean Greece); useful work of reference for the relations of Crete with Pharaonic Egypt.

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            Inscriptions

            The first alphabetic inscriptions appear in Crete in the course of the 8th century BCE (in Kommos), and they are very numerous from the 6th century BCE to the 6th century CE. Inscriptions provide information on political institutions, law, society, religion, economy, and culture. No study of any aspect of Cretan history after the 6th century BCE is meaningful without the use of the continually growing epigraphic material. Most of the Greek and Latin inscriptions of Crete were collected by Federico Halbherr and later published as Guarducci 1935–1950; inscriptions found after 1935 are recorded in Supplementum epigraphicum graecum 1923– and Bulletin épigraphique 1888–. Many of them were collected in Bile 1988. The Christian inscriptions were collected in Bandy 1970. For the legal inscriptions, Koerner 1993 and van Effenterre and Ruzé 1994–1995 are indispensable collections. The Hellenistic treaties, an important group of texts for the study of Hellenistic Crete, have been edited with commentary in Chaniotis 1996. For the Hellenistic epigrams, see Fernández 2006.

            • Bandy, A. C. 1970. The Greek Christian inscriptions of Crete. Athens, Greece:Christian Archaeological Society.

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              Corpus of the Christian inscriptions of Crete from the 4th to the 9th centuries CE.

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            • Bile, Monique. 1988. Le dialecte crétois ancien: Étude de la langue des inscriptions; Recueil des inscriptions postérieures aux IC. Paris: de Boccard.

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              Systematic discussion of the linguistic features of Cretan inscriptions (7th–1st centuries BCE) and study of the Cretan dialect; although technical and not easily accessible to students, it is a useful reference work; it also contains a selection of inscriptions not included in Guarducci 1935–1950.

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            • “Bulletin épigraphique.” 1888–. In Revue des Études Grecques. Association pour l’encouragement des études grecques en France. Paris: E. Leroux.

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              Annual critical review of epigraphic publications; a small section is dedicated to Crete. Indispensable for historical studies.

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            • Chaniotis, Angelos. 1996. Die Verträge zwischen kretischen Poleis in der hellenistischen Zeit. Stuttgart, Germany: Steiner.

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              Edition (with translation and commentary) of the most numerous group of Hellenistic treaties: those concluded between Cretan poleis. These texts are representative of the main types of treaties (alliance, mutual grant of citizenship, economic cooperation).

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            • Guarducci, Margerita. 1935–1950. Inscriptiones creticae opera et consilio Friderici Halbherr collectae. 4 vols. Rome: Libreria dello Stato.

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              Collection of the Greek and Latin inscriptions of Crete (with Latin commentaries); the most valuable collection of sources for Cretan history from the 7th century BCE to Late Antiquity. Dozens of inscriptions have been published since the publication of these volumes; some of them have been included in Supplementum epigraphicum graecum.

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            • Koerner, Reinhard. 1993. Inschriftliche Gesetzestexte der frühen griechischen Polis. Aus dem Nachlaß herausgegeben von Klaus Hallof. Cologne, Germany: Böhlau.

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              Collection of inscriptions containing legal regulations (laws and decrees), including Cretan legal documents (7th–5th centuries BCE); the author provides very good commentaries and reliable translations; an important work of reference for Cretan law.

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            • Martínez Fernández, Angel. 2006. Epigramas helenisticos de Creta. Madrid: Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Instituto de Filología.

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              Critical edition with commentary on Hellenistic epigrams.

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            • Supplementum epigraphicum graecum. 1923–. Leiden, The Netherlands.: Brill.

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              Annual survey of new epigraphic publications, with emphasis on the presentation of new editions of inscriptions; there is a section dedicated to Crete in most volumes.

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            • van Effenterre, Henri, and Françoise Ruzé. 1994–1995. Nomima: Recueil d’inscriptions politiques et juridiques de l’archaïsme grec. Rome: École Française.

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              Collection of Archaic and Early Classical inscriptions containing legal regulations (laws and decrees), including Cretan legal documents (7th–5th centuries BCE), with translations and good commentaries; an important work of reference for Cretan law.

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            Coins

            The Cretans used coins at least as early as the 6th century BCE, originally foreign coins, and from the 5th century BCE on, also coins struck on Crete (Stefanakis 1999). Le Rider 1966 is the best introduction to this material. Svoronos 1890 is in many respects out of date, but because its material is organized according to cities, the book still offers a good overview of Cretan coinage.

            • Le Rider, Georges. 1966. Monnaies crétoises du Ve au Ier siècle av. J.-C. Paris: Librairie Orientaliste Paul Geuthner.

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              The most comprehensive study of Cretan coins, still unreplaced as a standard reference work, with useful observations on detailed questions, such as local mints, the political organization of Crete (coins are indicators of the political autonomy of cities), and political history (especially of the Hellenistic period); not useful for the study of the economy and not very accessible for students.

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            • Stefanakis, Manolis I. 1999. The introduction of coinage in Crete and the beginning of local minting. In From Minoan farmers to Roman traders: Sidelights on the economy of ancient Crete. Edited by Angelos Chaniotis, 247–268. Stuttgart, Germany: Steiner.

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              Up-to-date discussion of the introduction of coinage in Crete, with good bibliography of numismatic studies.

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            • Svoronos, J.-N. 1890. Numismatique de la Crète ancienne. Macon, France: n.p.

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              Presents the coins of Crete city by city; in this respect it has not been replaced by a similar systematic study, but it is out of date in many details (e.g., attributions and dates).

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            Regional Studies

            The reconstruction of the history of Crete is to a great extent the result of intensive exploration of settlement, land use, use of other resources, and cultural activities, both in individual sites (settlements, rural villas, sanctuaries, etc.) and over regions. It is not possible to present here a complete list of the sites that have been excavated, or of the regions in which field surveys have taken place. We present only a very small selection of surveys (see Surveys) and of important excavated sites (Sites). Information about excavations, finds, and archaeological research is provided on a regular basis in journals that cover Cretan archaeology (see Journals). Good overviews of archaeological research with reference to the most important sites are provided in Pendlebury 1939 and Myers, et al. 1992, and for Roman Crete in Sanders 1982. Schiering 1976 presents a selection of the most important excavations. Davaras 1989 provides information on almost all important sites. For overviews of archaeological research see Archaeological Sources.

            • Davaras, Costis. 1989. Guide to Cretan antiquities. 2d ed. Athens, Greece:Eptalofos.

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              Concise encyclopedia of Cretan history and archaeology; useful for a general audience. German updated translation by Wolfgang Schürmann, Führer zu den Altertümern Kretas (Athens, Greece:Eptalofos, 2003).

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            • Myers, J. Wilson, Eleanor Emlen Myers, and Gerald Cadogan, eds. 1992. The aerial atlas of ancient Crete. Berkeley: Univ. of California Press; London: Thames and Hudson.

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              This volume presents aerial photographs of a good selection of important archaeological sites of all periods, with information on their history and basic bibliography; extremely useful as a reference.

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            • Pendlebury, J. D. S. 1939. The archaeology of Crete: An introduction. London: Methuen.

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              Although reflecting the state of research in prewar Crete, this remains an unsurpassed introduction to the study of Cretan history and archaeology; well-written, methodologically inspiring, and based on intimate knowledge of the Cretan landscape and the history of Crete from prehistory to modern times. Reprinted London: Methuen, 1979.

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            • Sanders, Ian F. 1982. Roman Crete: An archaeological survey and gazetteer of Late Hellenistic, Roman, and Early Byzantine Crete. Warminster, UK: Aris and Phillips.

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              A comprehensive study of Roman Crete, with a valuable discussion of the archaeological remains of this period in various Cretan sites.

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            • Schiering, Wolfgang. 1976. Funde auf Kreta. Frankfurt am Main, Germany: Musterschmidt.

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              A selection of important excavations, primarily of the Minoan period (Knossos, Kato Zakros, Mallia, Nirou Chani, Amnisos, Tylissos, Cave of Kamares, Phaistos, Aghia Triada); very useful for a first orientation; accessible to non-specialists.

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            Surveys

            Surveys provide information about continuities and changes in the use of a landscape (settlement patterns and settlement hierarchy, ecology, economy, communication, demographic density). Surveys have been and are being conducted in Crete, both in connection with the history of individual sites (e.g., Archanes and Knossos) and in connection with larger regions (e.g., the highland plain of Lasithi and the plain of Mesara). We present here a selection of surveys that investigate human interaction within the landscape of prehistory to modern times. Kavousi (Haggis 2005) and Vrokastro (Hayden 2003–2005) represent two relatively small regions in eastern Crete, very important especially for the Bronze and Early Iron Ages. Hope Simpson, et al. 1994 studies settlement in a coastal area with great significance for Cretan sea trade. The highland plain of Lasithi (Watrous 1982) and the area of Sphakia in western Crete (Nixon, et al. 2000) are paradigmatic for human settlement in the highlands.

            • Haggis, Donald C. 2005. Kavousi I: The archaeological survey of the Kavousi region. Philadelphia: INSTAP Academic Press.

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              Presentation of the results of archaeological research in the area of Kavousi in eastern Crete (at the Kastro and Vrondas sites and their surrounding areas), important especially for the Bronze Age and the Early Iron Age; it provides information on topography, natural resources, and settlement patterns.

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            • Hayden, Barbara J. 2003–2005. Reports on the Vrokastro area, eastern Crete. Volume 1, Catalogue of pottery from the Bronze and Early Iron Age settlement of Vrokastro in the collections of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology and the Archaeological Museum, Herakleion, Crete. Volume 2, The settlement history of the Vrokastro area and related studies. Volume 3, The Vrokastro Regional Survey Project, sites and pottery. Philadelphia: Univ. of Pennsylvania.

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              The results of field surveys in the area of Vrokastro in eastern Crete presented in three volumes that provide information on topography, botany, water resources, settlement patterns, demography, and pottery; an important publication for the study of Bronze and Early Iron Age Crete.

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            • Hope Simpson, Richard, et al. 1994. The archaeological survey of the Kommos area. In Kommos I: The Kommos region and houses of the Minoan town, Part 1, The Kommos region, ecology, and Minoan industries. Edited by Joseph W. Shaw and Maria C. Shaw, 325–402. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press.

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              Presentation of the results of survey in the area of Kommos in southern Crete, with reference to settlement and economic activities.

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            • Nixon, Lucia, Jennifer Moody, Simon Price, and Oliver Rackham. 2000. The Sphakia survey: Internet Edition. Oxford: Univ. of Oxford.

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              The results of the Sphakia Survey, conducted in a mountainous area of western Crete, have not been published yet, but information is provided on the website. The project investigates human interaction with the landscape (settlement, economy, sacred landscapes, demography, land use, pastoralism, communications).

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              • Watrous, L. Vance. 1982. Lasithi: A history of settlement on a highland plain in Crete. Princeton, NJ: American School of Classical Studies at Athens.

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                An excellent presentation of settlement and economic activities in the plateau of Lasithi from prehistoric times to the modern period.

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              • Watrous, L. Vance, Despoina Hadzi-Vallianou, and Harriet Blitzer. 2004. The plain of Phaistos: Cycles of social complexity in the Mesara region of Crete. Los Angeles: Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, Univ. of California.

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                Publication of the results of an important survey in the western Mesara, the largest plain in Crete; information about settlement, land exploitation, and other economic activities, history, demography, and social anthropology from the early Late Neolithic period to modern times. The discussion of the Minoan period is reliable; in the discussion of the Classical and Hellenistic periods, however, there are many mistakes in interpretation of the written sources.

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              Sites

              The results of many excavations in Cretan sites remain unpublished and are known only from brief journal reports (see Journals) and presentations at congresses (Congresses). For an overview of archaeological research, see Archaeological sources. We present here a very small list of excavated sites, both settlements (Archanes, Eleutherna, Kommos) and sanctuaries (the Idaean Cave, Lebena), which represent various periods of Cretan history. Significant Minoan sites are Archanes, Knossos, Kommos, Mallia, Mochlos, Myrtos, Phaistos, Pseira, Psychro, Symi Viannou, and Zakros. For the Geometric and Archaic period see Gortyn, Eleutherna, Idaean Cave, Knossos, and Kommos. The Classical and Hellenistic periods are represented by Gortyn, Kommos, and Lebena. Important sites in Roman Crete are Gortyn, the Idaean Cave, Knossos, and Lebena. For Late Antiquity see Eleutherna.

              Archanes

              Archanes is one of the most important prehistoric sites in Crete because of the presence of the most important Minoan cemetery (Fourni), a palatial building (Tourkogitonia), a sanctuary (Anemospilia), and a large number of significant finds. Sakellarakis and Sapouna-Sakellaraki 1997 give a readable and very informative account of the excavations and their finds.

              • Sakellarakis, Yannis, and Efi Sapouna-Sakellaraki. 1997. Archanes: Minoan Crete in a new light. Athens, Greece:Ammos.

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                Presentation of the results of excavation and archaeological research at Archanes and the surrounding area; a very important publication for the study of Minoan religion, society, funerary rituals, economy, and arts; suitable for a wide audience.

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              Eleutherna

              Eleutherna, one of the important cities of Crete, is particularly important for a Geometric and Early Archaic cemetery (Orthi Petra), which has provided very important finds for the study of art, society, and funerary rituals (c. 900–600 BCE; Stampolidis 1994 and Stampolidis 1996) and for a Late Antique settlement and bishop’s seat, which is the site of the earliest Christian basilica in Crete (Themelis 2003). The results of the excavation are published in Greek (Kalpaxis 1991 and 1994; Stampolidis 1993; Themelis 2000). The best and most accessible introduction to the history of this settlement, its excavation, and its finds may be found in Stampolidis 2004. For the Late Antique/Early Byzantine settlement, see Themelis 2003.

              • Kalpaxis, Thanasis, ed. 1991. Eleutherna, Tomeas II.1: Epigraphes apo to Pyrgi kai to Nesi. Rethymno: Univ. of Crete.

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                Publication of an important group of Archaic, Classical, and Hellenistic inscriptions found in Eleutherna (including cult regulations and treaties).

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              • Kalpaxis, Thanasis, ed. 1994. Eleutherna, Tomeas II.2: Hena hellenistiko spiti (Spiti A) ste these Nesi. Rethymno: Univ. of Crete.

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                Publication concerning the architecture and finds (especially pottery) of a Hellenistic house.

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              • Stampolidis, Nikolaos C. 1993. Eleutherna, Tomeas III.1: Geometrika-archaika chronia kai odegos sten ekthese. To geometriko-archaiko nekrotapheio tes Orthes Petras. Rethymno: Univ. of Crete.

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                Introduction to the excavation of a very important cemetery of the Geometric and Archaic period and its finds (pottery, sculpture, metal objects); important for art history and society in the 9th–7th centuries BCE.

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              • Stampolidis, Nikolaos C. 1994. Eleutherna, Tomeas III.2: Apo te geometrike kai archaike nekropole. Taphikes pyres kai homerika epe. Rethymno: Univ. of Crete.

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                Very good treatment of the funerary rites in the Geometric and Archaic period and comparison of the finds in Eleutherna with information provided by the Homeric epics (especially ritual execution of prisoners). See also Stampolidis 1996.

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              • Stampolidis, Nikolaos C. 1996. Eleutherna, Tomeas III.3: Antipoina. Symbole ste melete ton ethon kai ton ethimon tes geometrikes-archaïkes periodou. Rethymno: Univ. of Crete.

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                Based on an interesting find in Eleutherna (execution of a prisoner during the burial of two warriors; see Stampolidis 1994), the author collects the information for these practices in early Greece.

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              • Stampolidis, Nikolaos C. 2004. Eleutherna: Polis, acropolis, necropolis. Translated by Alexandra Doumas. Athens, Greece:Museum of Cycladic Art.

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                Illustrated catalogue of an exhibition in the Museum of Cycladic Art; it provides all the essential information concerning the history, topography, and finds in Eleutherna, very important mainly for the material from the cemetery (especially 9th–7th centuries BCE), which provides information on pottery, sculpture, funerary rites, the economy, and society; a temple of the 5th century BCE; numerous inscriptions; and an important settlement of Late Antiquity, with baths, houses, and a basilica decorated with mosaics (especially 4th–7th centuries CE).

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              • Themelis, Petros G., ed. 2000. Protobyzantine Eleutherna, Tomeas 1. 2 vols. Rethymno: Univ. of Crete.

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                Good introduction to the history of Eleutherna in Late Antiquity and the Early Byzantine period (c. 300–800 CE); presents some of the finds of the excavation of the Late Antique settlement (including pottery and inscriptions). See also Themelis 2003.

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              • Themelis, Petros G. 2003. Ancient Eleutherna: East sector. Athens, Greece:Tameion Archaiologikon Poron.

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                Brief introduction to the history and archaeology of Eleutherna in Late Antiquity and in the Early Byzantine period (c. 300–800 CE).

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              Gortyn

              From the Archaic to the Hellenistic period Gortyn, together with Knossos and Lyttos, was one of the most powerful Cretan cities; after the Roman conquest it became the capital of the province of Crete and Cyrene. It is one of the few Cretan cities of the post-Minoan period to have been systematically excavated, and the best-known Roman city on Crete. Important areas and buildings that have been explored include the Archaic Acropolis (Johannowsky 2002; Rizza and Santa-Maria Scrinari 1968), the Hellenistic fortifications (Allegro and Ricciardi 1999), and the Roman Praetorium (Di Vita 2000–2001; Di Vita and Martin 1997). Marginesu 2005 presents a useful overview of the urban development based on epigraphic sources. The results of the excavations are presented in articles and in the Gortina volumes. See also Roman Crete: Art.

              • Allegro, Nunzio, and Maria Ricciardi. 1999. Gortina IV: Le fortificazioni di eta ellenistica. Padua, Italy: Bottega d’Erasmo.

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                Fortification walls were uncommon in Crete; Gortyn provides the best-studied example.

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              • Di Vita, Antonino, ed. 1988. Gortina I. Rome: L’Erma di Bretschneider.

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                First publication of material found in the excavations (works of art, inscriptions).

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              • Di Vita, Antonino, ed. 2000–2001. Gortina V: Lo Scavo del Pretorio (1989–1995). 7 vols. Padua, Italy: Ausilio.

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                Publication concerning the architectural remains and the finds from the building complex known as the Praetorium—the most important excavation of a Roman site in Crete.

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              • Di Vita, Antonino, and Archer Martin. 1997. Gortina II: Pretorio, il materiale degli scavi Colini, 1970–1977. Padua, Italy: Bottega d’Erasmo.

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                Publication concerning archeological finds (architecture, sculpture, pottery, small finds) made during the first phase of the excavation of the most important building complex in Gortyn, the so-called Praetorium (seat of the provincial governor). Later excavations have provided more material and new insights on the history of this building complex.

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              • Johannowsky, Werner. 2002. Il santuario sull’acropoli di Gortina, II. Rome: Scuola Archeologica Italiana di Atene.

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                A publication on finds of the Geometric and Early Archaic periods from the sanctuary of Athena in Gortyn.

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              • Marginesu, Giovanni. 2005. Gortina di Creta: Prospettive epigrafiche per lo studio della forma urbana. Athens, Greece:Scuola Archeologica Italiana di Atene.

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                The author exploits the information provided by inscriptions (mainly of the Late Archaic and Classical periods) for the study of the topography and urban development of Gortyn.

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              • Montali, Gilberto. 2006. Il teatro romano di Gortina. Padua, Italy: Bottega d’Erasmo.

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                Publication concerning the Roman theater of Gortyn (the best known theater in Crete), its architecture and its decoration.

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              • Perlman, Paula. 2000. Gortyn: The first seven hundred years. In Polis and politics: Studies in ancient Greek history presented to Mogens Herman Hansen on his sixtieth birthday, August 20, 2000. Edited by Pernille Flensted-Jensen, 59–90. Copenhagen, Denmark: Museum Tusculanum.

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                Thorough review of the archaeological, literary, and epigraphic sources in an attempt to reconstruct the history of Gortyn.

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              • Rizza, Giovanni, and Valnea Santa-Maria Scrinari. 1968. Il santuario dell’acropoli di Gortina, I. Rome: Istituto Poligrafico dello Stato.

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                Publication of the excavation results for a sanctuary of Athena in Gortyn; important for the development of Gortyn in the Archaic period.

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              Idaean Cave

              The mythological birthplace and grave of Cretan Zeus, the Idaean Cave (Idaion Antron), was the most important sanctuary of Crete from the Minoan period to Late Antiquity (Sakellarakis 1988a). Important finds were made in 1884, but the only systematic excavation took place in 1982–1986. Details of only some of the finds have been published, including bronze reliefs (Kunze 1931), dedications of the Geometric and Archaic periods (Sakellarakis 1988b; Matthäus 2000), and Roman lamps (Sapouna 1998). Good overviews of the finds have been presented in Sakellarakis 1985 and Sakellarakis 1988a.

              • Kunze, Emil. 1931. Kretische Bronzereliefs. Stuttgart, Germany: Kohlhammer.

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                Publication and study of shields and bowls with relief decoration from the Idaean Cave (c. 800–600 BCE); these bronze reliefs show strong influence from Assyria and the Near East and rank among the most important representatives of Cretan craftsmanship in the Geometric and Early Archaic periods. The date of these objects is still a matter of controversy. More material was found during the excavations of 1982–1986 (still unpublished).

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              • Matthäus, Hartmut. 2000. Die Idäische Zeus-Grotte auf Kreta: Griechenland und der Vordere Orient im frühen 1. Jahrtausend v. Chr. Archäologischer Anzeiger 2000:517–547.

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                Discussion of the finds from the Idaean Cave that reveal contacts with the Near East in the Geometric period; an important contribution to the study of Cretan art. See Sakellarakis 1988b.

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              • Sakellarakis, Yannis. 1985. L’antro Ideo: Cento anni di attività archeologica (1884–1984). Atti della Accademia dei Lincei 74:19–48.

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                The best overview of the finds from the Idaean Cave (Minoan pottery, bronze shields and vases, Oriental ivories, Geometric seals, etc.).

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              • Sakellarakis, Yannis. 1988a. The Idaean Cave: Minoan and Greek worship. Kernos 1:207–214.

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                Summary of the information provided by the archaeological discoveries in the Idaean Cave in regard to its use for cult purposes.

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              • Sakellarakis, Yannis. 1988b. Some Geometric and Archaic votives from the Idaian Cave. In Early Greek cult practice: Proceedings of the Fifth International Symposium at the Swedish Institute at Athens, 26–29 June, 1986. Edited by Robin Hägg, 173–192. Göteborg, Sweden: Paul Åström.

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                Presentation of important finds from the Idaean Cave, which demonstrate its importance as a cult center but also provide information on the international contacts of Crete.

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              • Sapouna, Polina. 1998. Die Bildlampen römischer Zeit aus der Idäischen Zeusgrotte auf Kreta. British Archaeological Reports, International Series 696. Oxford: Archaeopress.

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                Systematic discussion of the clay mold lamps found in the Idaean Cave, the greatest group of lamps ever discovered on Crete; useful for the study of a flourishing industry in Roman Crete and the introduction of foreign (Italian) workshops.

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              Knossos

              Systematically excavated since 1900, Knossos is the best-known site of Crete, primarily for its Minoan palace but important also for later periods. In the Classical and Hellenistic periods Knossos was one of the most important cities of Crete. This is where the only Roman colony was established after the Roman conquest. No topic in Cretan history and archaeology can be studied without adducing material from Knossos. Hood and Smyth 1981 gives an overview of the topography and the archaeological research in Knossos; the chapters in Evely, et al. 1994 cover the entire history and archaeology of Knossos. Except for the prominent Minoan remains, notably the palace (Evans 1921–1934; Palaces) and the “Unexplored Mansion” (Popham 1984), the excavations have brought to light very important artifacts from the Geometric and Early Archaic in the North Cemetery (Coldstream and Catling 1996), and from the Classical and Hellenistic periods in the sanctuary of Demeter and in the “Unexplored Mansion” (Coldstream 1973; Sackett 1992), and from the Imperial period from the “Unexplored Mansion” (Sackett 1992).

              • Coldstream, Nicholas J., ed. 1973. Knossos: The sanctuary of Demeter. London: British School at Athens.

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                Publication concerning the material found in the excavation of a sanctuary of Demeter (pottery, small finds); a significant group for the study of Knossos in the Classical and Hellenistic periods.

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              • Coldstream, Nicholas J., and Hector W. Catling, eds. 1996. Knossos: The North Cemetery, early Greek tombs I–II. London: British School at Athens.

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                Publication concerning the material found in the excavation of the North Cemetery of Knossos, dating to the Geometric and Archaic periods.

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              • Evans, Arthur. 1921–1934. The palace of Minos at Knossos. 5 vols. London: Macmillan.

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                The publication of the details surrounding Evans’s excavations in the palace of Knossos; a pioneering work for the study of Minoan art, architecture, and culture, although most of Evans’s views concerning the function of the palace and its chronology have been revised by later research; see Minoan and Mycenaean Crete: Chronology and Palaces.

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              • Evely, Don, Helen Hughes-Brock, and Nicoletta Momigliano, eds. 1994. Knossos: A labyrinth of history; Papers presented in honour of Sinclair Hood. London: British School at Athens, 1994.

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                Collection of studies systematically covering the history and archaeology of Knossos, from prehistory to the Roman period.

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              • Hatzaki, Eleni. 2005. Knossos: The Little Palace. London: British School at Athens.

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                Publication on an important Minoan building (earlier known as the West House), its architecture, and its finds; the publication of this material is significant for the ongoing discussion concerning the date of the final destruction of the late palace in Knossos.

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              • Hood, Sinclair, and David Smyth. 1981. Archaeological survey of the Knossos area. 2d ed. London: British School at Athens.

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                Presentation on the topography of Knossos and of all the sites of archaeological significance; an indispensable reference work for the study of Knossos.

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              • Panagiotaki, Marina. 1999. The central palace sanctuary at Knossos. London: British School at Athens.

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                Meticulous study of finds, primarily objects of cultic significance, found in a complex of rooms and repositories near the throne room of the Minoan palace; they probably represent a mass of furniture from a shrine whose location remains uncertain. An important contribution to the study of the palace and its religious function, but quite technical.

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              • Popham, Mervin R., ed. 1984. The Minoan Unexplored Mansion at Knossos. London: Thames and Hudson.

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                Publication of the results of an excavation of a significant building near the palace of Knossos; the finds include frescoes, pottery, sealstones, figurines, and other small finds; an important complex for the chronology and history of settlement in the Palatial period. For later finds see Sackett 1992.

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              • Sackett, L. H., ed. 1992. Knossos: From Greek city to Roman colony; Excavations at the Unexplored Mansion II. London: British School at Athens.

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                Publication of very diverse archaeological material from the Geometric to the Imperial periods, found in a building near the palace of Knossos; very important for the study of Cretan art after the Minoan period.

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              Kommos

              Kommos is an important site in southern Crete, with a Minoan town and harbor and later an important sanctuary (Geometric–Hellenistic periods). The studies of this site provide information on Minoan architecture (in the town and harbor; see Shaw and Shaw 1996 and Shaw and Shaw 2000b; Shaw 2006), the presence of Phoenicians and other foreign traders in the 8th–7th centuries BCE, and cult practices (Shaw and Shaw 2000a; Shaw 2006), but also on pottery (Betancourt 1990; Watrous 1992).

              • Betancourt, Philip P. 1990. Kommos II: The final Neolithic through Middle Minoan pottery. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press.

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                Publication on an important group of prehistoric pottery, especially of the Early Bronze Age and the Palatial period.

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              • Shaw, Joseph W. 2006. Kommos: A Minoan harbor town and Greek sanctuary in southern Crete. Princeton, NJ: American School of Classical Studies.

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                Short, readable overview of the architecture and finds from this important site; addressed to a non-specialist audience.

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              • Shaw, Joseph W., and Maria C. Shaw, eds. 1996. Kommos I: The Kommos region and houses of the Minoan town. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press.

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                Introduction to this important site (Minoan harbor, Greek sanctuary), the Minoan settlement, domestic architecture, and domestic economy.

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              • Shaw, Joseph W., and Maria C. Shaw, eds. 2000a. Kommos IV: The Greek sanctuary. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press.

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                Presentation of the architecture, history, and finds of one of the most important Cretan sanctuaries of the historical period; the book’s chapters discuss the architecture, the inscriptions, the votive sculpture, Greek, Phoenician, and Roman pottery, and other finds. On the basis of these finds, the cult practice and its development are reconstructed.

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              • Shaw, Joseph W., and Maria C. Shaw, eds. 2000b. Kommos V: The monumental Minoan buildings at Kommos. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press.

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                Publication concerning the architectural remains and finds (mostly pottery) of monumental buildings, primarily related to the function of Kommos as a harbor; a very important contribution to Minoan external relations, architecture, and harbor installations (Building P).

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              • Watrous, L. Vance. 1992. Kommos III: The Late Bronze Age pottery. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press.

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                Publication of details surrounding the pottery found in Late Bronze Age deposits.

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              Lebena

              The sanctuary of Asklepios in Lebena, a harbor town in southern Crete, is one of the best-known sanctuaries of the Classical, Hellenistic, and Imperial periods. Melfi 2007 presents a reliable overview of its history and architecture.

              Mallia

              Mallia (also spelled Malia) is the site of a Minoan palace and town on the northern coast of Crete. It has been extensively excavated, and publications on Mallia present a comprehensive picture of the palace and its relation to the town, a building complex that served ceremonial, administrative, and economic activities (“Quartier Mu”; see Poursat 1992), the town and its production centers, and the cemeteries. The results of the excavations, of great significance for the study of Minoan economy, administration, settlement, and religion, are presented in the series Fouilles exécutées à Mallia 1928–. A general synthesis is given in van Effenterre 1980.

              • Feuilles exécutées à Mallia. 1928–. Paris: Geuthner.

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                The results of the excavations in Mallia are presented in this series. The volumes, which are significant for the study of topography, architecture, administration, economy, and society, are dedicated to the geography of the region; the palace, the political center of the settlement; an important Middle Bronze Age-building complex with ceremonial, administrative, and economic functions; the town; and its cemeteries.

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                • Poursat, Jean-Claude. 1992. Guide de Malia au temps de premiers palais: Le Quartier Mu. Paris: Boccard, 1992.

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                  Useful, general overview of the functions of a building complex known as “Quartier Mu,” which had administrative, ceremonial, and economic functions (as a center of production).

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                • van Effenterre, Henri. 1980. Le palais de Mallia et la cité minoenne: Étude de synthèse. 2 vols. Rome: Edizioni dell’Ateneo.

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                  An excellent introduction to the history and functions of the palace at Mallia and its relation to the adjacent town; it summarizes the results of the early excavations; less technical than the detailed studies presented in Fouilles exécutées à Mallia.

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                Mochlos

                Mochlos is an important Minoan site in eastern Crete. The excavations have revealed information concerning settlement (Soles and Brogan 2003 and Soles, et al. 2008), craftsmanship (the artisans’ quarter; see Soles 2004), agriculture (a farmhouse at Chalinomouri), funerary cult (Soles, et al. 2008), and pottery (Barnard and Brogan 2003). The finds are published in the series Mochlos, edited by Jeffrey Soles and Costis Davaras.

                • Barnard, Kellee A., and Thomas M. Brogan. 2003. Mochlos IB: Period III, Neopalatial settlement on the coast: The artisans’ quarter and the farmhouse at Chalinomouri; the Neopalatial pottery. Philadelphia: INSTAP Academic Press.

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                  Publication of information regarding the pottery; technical, but useful for the study of pottery in the period of the New Palaces.

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                • Soles, Jeffrey S. 2004. Mochlos IC, Period III: Neopalatial settlement on the coast: The artisans’ quarter and the farmhouse at Chalinomouri; the small finds. Philadelphia: INSTAP Academic Press.

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                  Publication on small finds (stone, bone, metal, and clay objects), which contribute to the knowledge of craftsmanship and life in a small Minoan town.

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                • Soles, Jeffrey S., and Thomas M. Brogan. 2003. Mochlos IA: Period III, Neopalatial settlement on the coast: The artisans’ quarter and the farmhouse at Chalinomouri; the sites. Philadelphia: INSTAP Academic Press.

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                  Presentation of a Neopalatial artisans’ quarter in the settlement at Mochlos.

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                • Soles, Jeffrey S., and Sevi Triantaphyllou, with Costis Davaras, Nikos P. Papadakis, Chrysa Sophianou, Joanna Bending, Jerolyn E. Morrison, Dimitra Mylona, Maria Ntinou, Douglas P. Park, and David S. Reese. 2008. Mochlos IIA, Period IV: The Mycenaean settlement and cemetery; the sites. Philadelphia: INSTAP Academic Press.

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                  Overview of the residential settlement and its cemetery in the Late Bronze Age; instructive for settlement and funerary practices in a small community.

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                Myrtos

                Myrtos in southern Crete is one of the best-known settlements of the Prepalatial period; its study has contributed greatly to the knowledge of economy and society in early Crete. Consult Warren 1972.

                • Warren, Peter. 1972. Myrtos: An early Bronze Age settlement in Crete. London: British School of Archaeology at Athens.

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                  Publication of the results of the excavation, with chapters on the settlement, its pottery, economy, society, physical geography, and ecology; in its time a pioneering work, still important for understanding the developments that led to the foundation of central administration.

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                Phaistos

                Phaistos is the second largest palace of Minoan Crete. Its excavation has contributed to the understanding of the architecture and functions of Minoan palaces. Phaistos was also the site of a city-state in the Classical and Hellenistic periods, destroyed in the mid-2nd century BCE and not well preserved in the archaeological record. Pernier and Banti 1935–1951 presents the results of the early Italian excavations in Phaistos; Levi 1976–1981 gives a more general overview.

                • Levi, Doro. 1976–1981. Festòs e la civiltà minoica. 6 vols. Rome: Edizioni dell’Ateneo.

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                  Presentation of the results of the excavations in the palace of Phaistos, with a thorough discussion of how these excavations have contributed to a better understanding of Minoan Crete; a fundamental reference work.

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                • Pernier, Luigi, and Luisa Banti. 1935–1951. Il palazzo minoico di Festòs. 2 vols. Rome: Libreria dello Stato.

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                  Publication covering the excavations in Phaistos, with presentation of the architecture and other finds; quite technical and on some points out of date because of more recent excavations at the site, but still important for the study of Minoan Crete.

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                Pseira

                Pseira, a small island off eastern Crete, has been systematically excavated and studied; it represents a small Minoan settlement, providing valuable information on its society and the economy (production and trade), but also religion, funerary practices, everyday life, and artistic production, in a peripheral Minoan town. The results of the excavation are presented in the series Pseira (see Betancourt and Davaras 1995–2005.

                • Betancourt, Philip P., and Costis Davaras, eds. 1995–2005. Pseira [series]. Philadelphia: Univ. of Pensylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology.

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                  Publication on the architecture and finds at Pseira. The individual volumes are dedicated to the topography of the island (Philip P. Betancourt, Costis Davaras, and Richard Hope Simpson, eds., Pseira IX: The archaeological survey of Pseira island, 2 vols., 2003–2005), the architecture (John C. McEnroe, et al., Pseira V: The architecture of Pseira, 2001), various buildings (Pseira I: The Minoan buildings on the west side of Area A, 1995; Pseira II: Building AC (the ‘Shrine’) and other buildings in Area A. 1997; Pseira IV: Minoan buildings in Areas B, C, D, and F, 1999; and Cheryl R. Floyd, Pseira III: The Plateia building, 1998), and the cemetery (Pseira VI: The Pseira cemetery 1, the surface survey, 2002).

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                Psychro

                The cave at Psychro in the Lasithi plateau (also known as the Dictaean Cave) was a significant cult place during the Minoan period and Early Iron Age. Rutkowski and Nowicki 1996 and Watrous 1996 are two comprehensive studies.

                • Rutkowski, Bogdan, and Krzysztof Nowicki. 1996. The Psychro Cave and other sacred grottoes in Crete. Warsaw, Poland: Art and Archaeology.

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                  Study of the cult activities in the Psychro cave and useful overview of the use of caves for cult purposes in Minoan Crete.

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                • Watrous, L. Vance. 1996. The cave sanctuary of Zeus at Psychro: A study of extra-urban sanctuaries in Minoan and Early Iron Age Crete. Aegeum 15. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège.

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                  Study of the finds and the cult practice in the cave of Psychro and in other extra-urban cult places (Arkalochori, Idaean Cave, Kamares, Petsophas, Karfi, Juktas, Kato Syme, etc.); an important contribution on the different functions of cult locations in Minoan Crete.

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                Symi Viannou

                An important extra-urban sanctuary at Symi Viannou (eastern Crete) was continually in use from the Minoan period to the Hellenistic, although the nature of the cult changed in the course of the time. The discussion on the character of Minoan worship is ongoing, but Lebessi and Muhly 1990 gives a good summary. Schürmann 1996 and Lebessi 2002 have studied important groups of dedications (statuettes of animals and men). The cult in the historical period is better known, when the sanctuary was dedicated to the cult of Hermes and Aphrodite and served as the place where the transition rituals of young men of elite families took place; these rites and the relevant dedications have been studied in Lebessi 1985 and Lebessi 2002 (see also Rituals).

                • Lebessi, Angeliki. 1985. To hiero tou Herme kai Aphrodites ste Syme Biannou. I.1. Chalkina kretika toreumata. Athens, Greece:Archaeological Society at Athens.

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                  Publication concerning an important group of bronze dedications in the sanctuary of Hermes and Aphrodite (bronze tablets with ritual scenes); these finds are directly connected with transitory rituals of young men in Doric Crete; thorough discussion of the iconography and the workshops, the cult of Hermes and Aphrodite, and Cretan rites of passage; a major contribution to the history of both Archaic Cretan art and Cretan society. The conclusions are presented in an English-language summary.

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                • Lebessi, Angeliki. 2002. To hiero tou Herme kai Aphrodites ste Syme Biannou, III: Ta chalkina anthropomorpha eidolia. Athens, Greece:Archaeological Society at Athens.

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                  Publication covering bronze statuettes in the sanctuary of Hermes and Aphrodite (Minoan, Geometric, and Early Archaic); an important group of dedicatory offerings, significant for the study of early art and religion. The conclusions are presented in an English summary.

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                • Lebessi, Angeliki, and Polymnia Muhly. 1990. Aspects of Minoan cult: Sacred enclosures, the evidence from the Syme sanctuary (Crete). Archäologischer Anzeiger 1990:315–336.

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                  Discussion of central features of the Minoan phase of the sanctuary at Symi Viannou; a good summary of the finds.

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                • Schürmann, Wolfgang. 1996. Das Heiligtum des Hermes und der Aphrodite in Syme Viannou, II: Die Tierstsatuetten aus Metall. Athens, Greece:Archaeological Society at Athens.

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                  Publication concerning an important group of dedications of the Minoan phase of the sanctuary (statuettes of animals); these finds contribute to the reconstruction of the cult praxis in the sanctuary.

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                Zakros

                A small Minoan palace has been excavated at the site of Kato Zakros in eastern Crete. The results have been presented in articles in journals, proceedings of congresses, and collective volumes. Platon 1971 gives a short introduction to the palace and its significance.

                Minoan and Mycenaean Crete (C. 2600–1200 BCE)

                The civilization of Bronze Age Crete (c. 2000–1200 BCE) was the first high culture in Europe. It was characterized by advanced administrative, political, and social structures, complex economic activities, a refined culture, high artistic achievements, and complex religious beliefs. The glamour of Minoan Crete is clearly reflected in Greek mythology (e.g., in the myths of Minos and the Labyrinth). Although written sources exist (texts in the Cretan hieroglyphic and Linear A scripts, the disc of Phaistos), they are written in an unknown language and are still inaccessible to us, despite the claims of countless dilettanti to have deciphered them. For this reason, the Minoan period can be approached primarily through archaeological remains, although external sources (e.g., Egyptian texts) and later traditions provide additional, not always reliable information. All studies concerning Minoan Crete are controversial, from the chronology of pottery to the function of the palaces and from religious beliefs to the origin of the Minoan Cretans. One can recognize a few major turning points in the historical development of Crete in the Bronze Age, although their dating is a matter of controversy (see Chronology): the emergence of the palaces—the develoment of complex administrative structures that comprised large regions of Crete but probably not the entire island (c. 2100/2000 BCE; see Prepalatial Crete and the Emergence of the State); the destruction of the early palaces by an earthquake (c. 1800 BCE) and the continuation of the same administrative system; the destruction of the new palaces (c. 1500/1450 BCE?) and the arrival of a Greek population (“Mycenaeans”), which established an administration in Knossos (see Mycenaean Crete); the final destruction and abandonment of the palace of Knossos around 1360 BCE, the continuation of some kind of central administration in Kydonia/Chania, and a process of decentralization. In this section, we distinguish between Minoan and Mycenaean Crete only in regard to the studies based on the Linear B texts, which are unequivocal testimonia of Mycenaean administration. For bibliography on important sites during this period see Sites (Archanes, Knossos, Kommos, Mallia, Mochlos, Myrtos, Phaistos, Pseira, Psychro, Symi Viannou, and Zakros).

                Overviews

                Minoan and Mycenaean Crete are best studied in connection with general developments in the Aegean and the Near East. Shelmerdine 2008 is the best and most up-to-date introduction; Runnels and Murray 2001 offers a useful companion for quick reference. Dickinson 1994 and Warren 1989 are reliable and readable handbooks, suitable for students; Musti, et al. 1991 covers important aspects of the Mycenaean period. Good introductions to art and architecture are offered in Betancourt 2007 and Preziosi and Hitchcock 1999; for the development of urban settlements see Branigan 2001.

                • Betancourt, Philip P. 2007. Introduction to Aegean art. Philadelphia: INSTAP Academic Press.

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                  Readable, thorough introduction to the main features of Minoan and Mycenaean art; excellent introduction to the subject for students.

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                • Branigan, Keith, ed. 2001. Urbanism in the Aegean Bronze Age. London: Sheffield Academic Press.

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                  Collection of studies on the development of urban centers in the Aegean and, in particular, in Minoan Crete.

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                • Deger-Jalkotzy, Sigrid, and Irene S. Lemos, eds. 2006. Ancient Greece: From the Mycenaean palaces to the age of Homer. Edinburgh, Scotland: Edinburgh Univ. Press.

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                  Collection of essays that discuss political organization, society, economy, and culture from the Mycenaean period to the 8th century BCE; the chapters treat, among other things, Mycenaean palatial administration (pp. 73–76), and Mycenaean kingship and social structure (pp. 87–99); up-to-date, reliable, and suitable for students.

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                • Dickinson, Oliver. 1994. The Aegean Bronze Age. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

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                  Informative and comprehensive overview of the Bronze Age in the Aegean (including Crete); it places Crete in the context of more general developments in the broader geographical area; very useful to students as an introduction.

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                • Musti, Domenico, ed. 1991. La transizione dal miceneo all’alto arcaismo: Dal palazzo alla città. Atti del Convegno Internazionale Roma, 14–19 Marzo 1988. Rome: Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche.

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                  Collection of essays by leading scholars that discuss the most important aspects of political organization, society, economy, and culture from the Mycenaean period (also in Mycenaean Crete) to the Early Archaic period; an indispensable reference work for these periods.

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                • Preziosi, Donald, and Louise A. Hitchcock. 1999. Aegean art and architecture. Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press.

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                  A very good introduction to Minoan art and architecture in the context of the cultures of the Aegean; helpful for students.

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                • Runnels, Curtis N., and Priscilla Murray. 2001. Greece before history: An archaeological companion and guide. Stanford, CA: Stanford Univ. Press.

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                  Up-to-date and reliable introduction to the archaeology of the Bronze Age; a useful companion for students.

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                • Shelmerdine, Cynthia W., ed. 2008. The Cambridge companion to the Aegean Bronze Age. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

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                  In fifteen chapters written by leading specialists, this companion title covers all important aspects of the study of Minoan and Mycenaean Crete in the context of the Aegean network of cultures: methods and sources (1–18); Prepalatial Crete (77–104) and the formation of the palaces (105–120); art, culture, and administration (121–185); the relations of Crete to the Aegean islands (186–208); trade (209–229, 362–386); Mycenaean states, administration, and economy (289–326); religion (327–361); and the decline of the Mycenaean world (387–415).

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                • Warren, Peter. 1989. The Aegean civilizations: From ancient Crete to Mycenae. 2d ed. New York: Bedrick.

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                  Short overview of the main developments of in Bronze Age Crete, written by one of the leading authorities; very good for quick reference.

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                Bibliographies

                Because of new archaeological discoveries, our knowledge concerning the archaeology and history of Bronze Age Crete is evolving faster than that of any later period. Since 1957 Nestor (Bennett, et al. 1957–) has provided a bibliography on the Aegean world, including Bronze Age Crete. A series “Reviews of Aegean prehistory” published in the American Journal of Archaeology provides reviews of the recent literature and are indispensable for both students and researchers; these reviews have been edited in Cullen 2001, but those relevant to Crete can be separately consulted: the publications on Minoan and Mycenaean Crete have been discussed in Rehak and Younger 1998 and Watrous 1994.

                • Bennett, Emmett L., Jr., et al., eds. 1957–. Nestor: Bibliography of Aegean prehistory and related areas. Cincinnati, OH: Department of Classics, Univ. of Cincinnati.

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                  Valuable annual bibliography of Aegean studies, from the Bronze Age to Homer; it also considers the wider context of the Aegean world and Indo-European linguistics. Available online.

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                • Cullen, Tracey, ed. 2001. Aegean prehistory: A review. Boston: Archaeological Institute of America.

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                  This volume assembles the “Reviews of Aegean prehistory” published in the American Journal of Archaelogy; it contains addenda and an index.

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                • Rehak, Paul, and John G. Younger. 1998. Review of Aegean prehistory VII: Neopalatial, Final Palatial, and Postpalatial Crete. American Journal of Archaeology 102:91–173.

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                  Extremely useful review of publications concerning the historical development, culture, and archaeology of Crete in the period of the new palaces, under Mycenaean rule, and after the abandonment of the palaces. Republished with addenda in Cullen 2001.

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                • Watrous, L. Vance. 1994. Review of Aegean prehistory III: Crete from earliest prehistory through the Protopalatial period. American Journal of Archaeology 98:695–753.

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                  Extremely useful review of publications concerning the archaeology of Crete from the Neolithic to the Middle Bronze Age and the period of the early palaces. Republished with addenda in Cullen 2001.

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                History of Research

                Archaeological research on Bronze Age Crete was substantially shaped by contemporary concepts. The study of the history of research explains the background in which influential but also controversial interpretations of the Minoan world were shaped. The collections of essays in Darcque, et al. 2006 and Hamilakis 2002 give a very good picture of how views of the late 19th and early 20th centuries influenced archaeological thought. Arthur Evans, an extreme case, is discussed in MacGillivray 2000.

                • Darcque, Pascal, Michalis Fotiadis, and Olga Polychronopoulou, eds. 2006. Mythos: La préhistoire égéenne du XIXe au XXIe siècles après J.-C. Bulletin de Correspondance Hellénique Supp. 46. Athens and Paris: École française d’Athènes.

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                  An impressive collection of essays that demonstrate the influence of ideological and political concepts on the understanding, reconstruction, interpretation, and misinterpetation of Minoan Crete; not just for specialists.

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                • Hamilakis, Yannis, ed. 2002. Labyrinth revisited: Rethinking ‘Minoan’ archaeology. Oxford: Oxbow.

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                  Collection of studies dedicated to the history of Minoan archaeology and its evolution from the Victorian view of Evans to modern approaches.

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                • MacGillivray, Joseph Alexander. 2000. Minotaur: Sir Arthur Evans and the archaeology of the Minoan myth. London: Cape.

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                  A fascinating account of the life and work of the excavator of the palace at Knossos and creator of the concept of a Minoan empire that remained influential for most of the 20th century; a very good introduction to the methodological problems of Minoan studies.

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                Chronology

                Traditionally, Minoan and Mycenaean Crete is divided into some main periods based on the relative chronology of the pottery and other artifacts: Early, Middle, and Late Minoan (EM, MM, LM); each period is subdivided into subperiods and phases (EM I–III, MM I–III, LM I–III). These phases of artistic development correspond to recognizable periods of history (all dates are tentative): the Prepalatial period (EM; c. 3100–2000 BCE); the period of the Old Palaces (MM I–II; c. 2000–c. 1750/1700); the period of the New Palaces (MM III–LM Ib; c. 1750/1700–1450?); the period of Mycenaean palatial administration in Knossos (LM II–IIIA2; c. 1450–1360?); the decline of central administrative structures (LM IIIB–IIIC; c. 1380–1060?). To transform this relative chronology into an absolute one, scholars depends very much on the dating of Egyptian artifacts found on Crete and synchronizations with other cultures in the Near East (Bietak 2003; Manning 1995), on the date of the volcanic eruption in Thera (Santorini), believed to have caused the decline of the New Palaces, and the dates of the destructions and final abandonment of the palace of Knossos. Unfortunately, no agreement has been reached concerning these dates. Bietak 2003 and Bietak and Czerny 2007 assemble the the most recent effort to establish an absolute chronology, but Warren and Hankey 1989 is still useful in regard to the definitions of the problems and the method; for the methods of dating, see also Manning 1995. On the controversy concerning the date of the volcanic eruption in Thera (Santorini), see Höflmayer 2008, Manning 1999, and Warren 2006.

                • Bietak, Manfred, ed. 2003. The synchronisation of civilisations in the eastern Mediterranean in the second millennium B.C. II: Proceedings of the SCIEM 2000–EuroConference, Haindorf, 2nd of May–7th of May 2001. Vienna: Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften.

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                  Collection of essays that critically review the various methods for establishing the chronology of Minoan Crete in connection with the chronology of adjacent areas in the Aegean, the Near East, and Egypt. In this field new developments are very rapid, and in some details this book is already out of date.

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                • Bietak, Manfred, and Ernst Czerny, eds. 2007. The synchronisation of civilisations in the eastern Mediterranean in the second millenium B.C. II: Proceedings of the SCIEM 2000 – 2nd EuroConference, Vienna, 28th of May–1st of June 2003. Vienna: Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften.

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                  Additional and updated work on the chronology.

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                • Höflmayer, Felix. 2008. Das Ende von SM IB: Naturwissenschaftliche und archäologische Datierung. Egypt and the Levant 18:157–171.

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                  Up-to-date summary of research concerning the date of the volcanic eruption in Thera and the chronology of the Late Bronze Age.

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                • Manning, Sturt M. 1995. The absolute chronology of the Aegean Early Bronze Age: Archaeology, radiocarbon, and history. Sheffield, UK: J. R. Collins.

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                  Useful overview of the methods and the controversies concerning the establishment of a chronology of the Early Minoan period.

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                • Manning, Sturt M. 1999. A test of time. The volcano of Thera and the chronology and history of the Aegean and East Mediterranean in the mid cecond millennium BC. Oxford: Oxbow.

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                  Thorough study of the evidence concerning the date of volcanic eruption in Thera and its consequence for the chronology of the Bronze Age.

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                • Warren, Peter M. 2006. The date of the Thera eruption in relation to Aegean-Egyptian interconnections and the Egyptian historical chronology. In Timelines. Studies in honour of Manfred Bietak II. Edited by Ernst Czerny, et al. (Hrsg.), 305–321. Leuven: Peeters.

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                  Critical review of recent research on the date of the volcanic eruption in Thera and on the choronology of Minoan Crete.

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                • Warren, Peter, and Vronwy Hankey. 1989. Aegean Bronze Age chronology. Bristol, UK: Bristol Classical Press.

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                  Readable overview of the problems and methods of Bronze Age chronology; although it does not consider new finds, it remains a good introduction to this subject.

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                Prepalatial Crete and the Emergence of the State

                The Prepalatial period (c. 3000–2000 BCE) is marked by technological developments (metallurgy, stone vases, pottery), improved exploitation of the natural resources, small organized settlements connected in local networks, and contacts with the Aegean islands and Egypt. Luxury items, architecture, rituals, and the use of seals reflect a complex social structure and the emergence of an elite of producers, warriors, and priests. Owing to the absence of written sources, the factors that ultimately led to the emergence of complex administrative structures around 2000 BCE (social complexity, demographic rise, economic developments) can only indirectly be inferred from the archaeological material and discussed on the basis of theoretical models concerning state formation, interaction between settlements, and social complexity. Good introductions to these methodological and interpretative issues are given in Branigan 1988 and Cherry 1984 and Cherry 1986; Sbonias 1995 exploits the information provided by seals for social and political transformation in Crete during the third millennium BCE.

                • Branigan, Keith. 1988. Pre-palatial: The foundations of Palatial Crete, a survey of Crete in the Early Bronze Age. Amsterdam: Hakkert.

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                  Overview of the main cultural and social developments in Early Bronze Age Crete, written by a leading authority in this field; informative and stimulating.

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                • Cherry, John. 1984. The emergence of the state in the prehistoric Aegean. Proceedings of the Cambridge Philological Society 30:18–48.

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                  thought-provoking study of the social and economic factors that promoted the development of complex networks of settlements and administrative structures in Early Minoan Crete.

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                • Cherry, John. 1986. Polities and palaces: Some problems in Minoan state formation. In Peer-polity interaction and socio-political change. Edited by Colin Renfrew and John Cherry, 19–45. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

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                  Influential article that discusses the archaeological evidence for the relationships between settlements in Early Minoan Crete and attempts to identify the factors that led to the establishment of administrative structures.

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                • Sbonias, Kostas. 1995. Frühkretische Siegel: Ansätze für eine Interpretation der sozial-politischen Entwicklung auf Kreta während der Frühbronzezeit. British Archaeological Reports, International Series 620. Oxford: BAR.

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                  Based on an analysis of seals and sealings in the Early Minoan period, the author reconstructs the social organization of Crete during this same period, addressing subjects such as social hierarchy and the development of elites, family relations, and exchanges between communities, and hierarchy of settlements.

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                The Early and the New Palaces

                Large administrative centers (“palaces”) were created around 2100/2000 BCE. Destroyed around 1800 BCE by an earthquake, they were rebuilt and the administrative structure did not change. A second destruction (c. 1520–1450 BCE?) put an end to the traditional order. Several palaces or palatial complexes of various sizes collected, controlled, and redistributed the resources of large areas of the island (see Palaces). Regional centers and “villas” fulfilled analogous tasks (see Villas). Although written documents were produced, they have not yet been deciphered. For the main developments of this period, see the relevant chapters in general works of reference (Dickinson 1994; Shelmerdine 2008; Warren 1989). Significant sites of this period are Archanes, Knossos, Mallia, Phaistos, Symi Viannou, and Zakros (see Sites in the section Regional Studies). For individual aspects of this period, see also Political Organization, Society, Agriculture, Craftsmanship, Trade, External relations, Art, and Religion.

                • Dickinson, Oliver. 1994. The Aegean Bronze Age. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

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                  Informative and comprehensive overview of the Bronze Age in the Aegean (including Crete); it places Palatial Crete in the context of more general developments in the broader geographical area; very useful to students as an introduction.

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                • Shelmerdine, Cynthia W., ed. 2008. The Cambridge companion to the Aegean Bronze Age. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

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                  Chapters 5–9, written by leading specialists, cover important aspects of Palatial Crete (palaces, material culture, foreign relations, trade, religion); the best introduction for students, taking into consideration recent theoretical discourse.

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                • Warren, Peter. 1989. The Aegean civilizations: From ancient Crete to Mycenae. 2d ed. New York: Bedrick.

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                  Short overview of the main developments in Bronze Age Crete, written by one of the leading authorities; very good for quick reference.

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                Mycenaean Crete

                After the destruction of the new palaces (c. 1450 BCE), Greek immigrants from “Mycenaean” Greece, which had long been under Minoan influence, gained control of Crete or at least part of the island. The new rulers adopted the Minoan script Linear B for their administration and established themselves in the palace of Knossos, where written documents concerning their administration have been found (see Linear B Documents). Mycenaean Crete had contacts with mainland Greece, the Aegean islands, Egypt, the Levant, Asia Minor, and Sicily. Around 1380 BCE (or later?) the palace of Knossos was destroyed by a fire of unknown origin (Driessen 1990). Mycenaean Crete is part, generally, of the Mycenaean world and therefore cannot be studied in isolation, but rather in connection with the rest of that world. Mycenaean Crete is discussed in all handbooks of Aegean archaeology (see Minoan and Mycenaean Crete: Overviews). A very good overview of the evidence and the problems deciphering it is given in Driessen and Farnoux 1997; for the archaeological evidence, see Kanta 1980. For the transition to the period of Mycenaean rule, see Driessen and MacDonald 1997; for current research on Mycenaean palaces, see Galaty and Parkinson 2007.

                • Driessen, Jan. 1990. An early destruction in the Mycenaean palace at Knossos: A new interpretation of the excavation field-notes of the south-east area of the west wing. Leuven: Katholeke Universitet Leuven.

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                  Study of archaeological and documentary evidence (Linear B texts) that pertains to the destruction of the palace of Knossos in the period of its Mycenaean occupation; the author contends that there was an early destruction of the palace (c. 1400 BCE), followed by a reconstruction and a final destruction and abandonment (c. 1360 BCE); rather technical and to a certain extent hypothetical, but important for the chronology of the Linear B texts of Knossos.

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                • Driessen, Jan, and Alexandre Farnoux, eds. 1997. La Crète mycénienne: Actes de la Table Ronde Internationale organisée par l’École française d’Athènes, 26–26 mars 1991. Bulletin de Correspondance Hellénique Supp. 30. Paris: École française d’Athènes.

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                  Collection of essays by leading specialists that cover all aspects of Mycenaean Crete (settlement, society, economy, religion, art); indispensable for the study of Mycenaean Crete.

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                • Driessen, Jan, and Colin MacDonald. 1997. The troubled island: Minoan Crete before and after the Santorini eruption. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège.

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                  The authors reconsider the traditional chronology of the destruction of the new palaces and the transition to the period of Mycenaean rule on Crete; rather technical, and the results have not been generally accepted, but important for the reconstruction of the historical development of Minoan Crete.

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                • Galaty, Michael L., and William A. Parkinson, eds. 2007. Rethinking Mycenaean palaces II. 2d ed. Los Angeles: Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, Univ. of California.

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                  Although primarily concerned with Mycenaean palaces in mainland Greece (a few contributions are exclusively dedicated to Crete), this volume successfully summarizes current trends of research.

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                • Kanta, Athanasia. 1980. The late Minoan III period in Crete. Göteborg, Sweden: Paul Aström.

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                  Collection of the archaeological evidence (sites, artifacts) for the last phases of Minoan Crete; still a very useful reference work, although more material has come to light since 1980.

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                Political Organization

                Reconstruction of the political organization of Crete before the establishment of Mycenaean rule is extremely hypothetical, since the documents in Linear A have not been deciphered. The main evidence is provided by the palaces and their relations to other sites (see Palaces). The Mycenaean administration is better known thanks to the information contained in the Linear B documents (see Mycenaean Administration; Linear B Documents). In addition to the handbooks mentioned in Minoan and Mycenaean Crete: Overviews, the collective volumes edited in Rehak 1995 and Laffineur and Niemeier 1995 are good starting points for all relevant studies.

                • Driessen, Jan, lse Schoep, and Robert Laffineur, eds. 2002. Monuments of Minos: Rethinking the Minoan palaces. Proceedings of the International Workshop ‘Crete of the hundred Palaces?’ held at the Universite Catholique de Louvain, Louvain-la-Neuve, 14–15 December 2001. Aegeum 23. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège.

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                  Collection of stimulating essays that reflect on the problems connected with the interpretation of the Minoan palaces and their functions in light of recent archaeological discoveries.

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                • Laffineur, Robert, and Wolf-Dieter Niemeier, eds. 1995. Politeia: Society and state in the Aegean Bronze Age. Proceedings of the 5th International Aegean Conference. Aegeum 12. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège.

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                  Very important collection of studies that examine a variety of subjects concerning society and political organization in Minoan and Mycenaean Crete (kingship, administration, social hierarchies, religion); useful also for the bibliography.

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                • Rehak, Paul, ed. 1995. The role of the ruler in the prehistoric Aegean: Proceedings of a panel discussion presented in the Annual Meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America, New Orleans, Louisiana, 28 December 1992. Aegeum 11. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège.

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                  Collection of studies dedicated to the interpretation of the archaeological evidence related to the existence and nature of kingship in Minoan Crete. It includes several thought-provoking contributions (e.g., Robert B. Koehl. “The nature of Minoan kingship,” 23–36; Nano Marinatos, “Divine kingship in Minoan Crete,” 37–48; Eric H. Cline, “‘My brother, my son’: Rulership and trade between the LBA Aegean, Egypt and the Near East,” 143–150); unavoidably, many of the views expressed are controversial.

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                Mycenaean Administration

                The Linear B tablets, brief administrative documents dating to the last days of the palace of Knossos and of an administrative center in Kydonia/Chania (c. 1380–1200 BCE), provide information concerning the possibly monarchical rule of a wanax, the social structure (elite warriors, landowners, slaves), and the administrative control exercised by the palace of Knossos in a large region (though probably not the whole) of Crete. The main features of this palace administration, which is similar to that known from Mycenaean Greece (Pylos and Thebes), are discussed in the general handbooks (see Minoan and Mycenaean Crete, Overviews). Short, reliable introductions are given in Bennet 1985 and Driessen 2001. Bennet 1990 is important because it compares this administration with that of later periods of Cretan history. For the practical aspects of recordkeeping in the Mycenaean palaces, see Driessen 2000 and Sjöquist and Åström 1991, as well as Linear B Documents.

                • Bennet, John. 1985. The structure of the Linear B administration of Knossos. American Journal of Archaeology 89:231–249.

                  DOI: 10.2307/504327Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                  Short, readable introduction to the Mycenaean administration in Knossos and the main problems of its reconstruction.

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                • Bennet, John. 1990. Knossos in context: Comparative perspectives on the Linear B administration of LM II–III Crete. American Journal of Archaeology 94:193–212.

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                  Through a comparison of the administrative structures of Mycenaean Crete with later periods (Roman and Venetian Crete), Bennet shows the importance of large territories for the economic exploitation of Crete and the collection and redistribution of goods; methodologically, a very important contribution.

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                • Driessen, Jan. 2000. The scribes of the Room of the Chariot Tablets at Knossos: Interdisciplinary approach to the study of a Linear B deposit. Suplementos a Minos 15. Salamanca, Spain: Universita de Salamanca.

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                  An important but also very technical study of a group of texts (an “archive”) in Knossos; important for the reconstruction of recordkeeping.

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                • Driessen, Jan. 2001. Centre and periphery: Some observations on the administration of the kingdom of Knossos. In Economy and politics in the Mycenaean palace states. Edited by Sophia Voutsaki and J. Killen, 96–112. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Philological Society.

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                  Up-to-date discussion of the problems concerning the political organization of Mycenaean Crete and the relationship between the palace of Knossos and other Cretan regions; it addresses a very controversial subject in a clear manner.

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                • Sjöquist, Karl-Erik, and Paul Åström. 1991. Knossos: Keepers and kneaders. Göteborg, Sweden: Åström.

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                  Short, instructive introduction to the scribal and record-keeping practices that produced the Linear B texts.

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                Palaces

                The notion of Minoan palaces was shaped by the excavator of Knossos, Arthur Evans, under the influence of concepts prevalent in Victorian England (see History of Research). The concept of the palace as a residence of rulers is probably anachronistic. Today, this term designates administrative centers that are similar in layout. The Minoan palaces were unfortified building complexes consisting of storehouses, workshops, residential areas, administrative buildings, and cult spaces, arranged around a central court and connected by processional ways, corridors, and staircases. Several palaces or palatial complexes of various sizes (Knossos, Phaistos, Mallia, Zakros, Archanes, Galatas, Petras Sitias, Monastiraki) collected, controlled, and redistributed the resources of large areas of the island. The rituals performed there guaranteed the support of divine beings and represented the authority of the elite. For the excavated palaces, see Sites (Archanes, Knossos, Mallia, Phaistos, Zakros); for the palace of Knossos, the earliest and largest palace, see Knossos, Hood and Taylor 1981, and Raison 1988–1993. For general overviews one may consult Graham 1987. Hägg and Marinatos 1987 and Driessen, et al. 2002 reflect the controversies concerning the palaces’ functions. An instructive case study of the small “palace” at Petras in eastern Crete is presented in Tsipopoulou 1997.

                • Damiani Indelicato, Silvia. 1982. Piazza pubblica e palazzo nella Creta minoica. Rome: Jouvence.

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                  Study of important features of Minoan public architecture: open public places associated with palaces.

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                • Driessen, Jan, Ise Schoep, and Robert Laffineur, eds. 2002. Monuments of Minos: Rethinking the Minoan palaces; Proceedings of the International Workshop ‘Crete of the hundred Palaces?’ held at the Universite Catholique de Louvain, Louvain-la-Neuve, 14–15 December 2001. Aegeum 23. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège.

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                  Collection of stimulating essays that reflect on the problems connected with the interpretation of the Minoan palaces in light of recent archaeological discoveries.

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                • Graham, James W. 1987. The palaces of Crete. Rev. ed. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press.

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                  Very good introduction to the main features of Minoan palaces, primarily from the perspective of architecture.

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                • Hägg, Robin, and Nano Marinatos, eds. 1987. The function of the Minoan palaces: Proceedings of the 4th International Symposium of the Swedish Institute in Athens, 10–16 June 1984. Göteborg, Sweden: Paul Aström.

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                  Useful collection of essays that reflect the recent controversies concerning the use of the term “palace” and the functions of the Minoan palaces as centers of administration and cult.

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                • Hood, Sinclair, and William Taylor. 1981. The Bronze Age palace at Knossos: Plans and sections. London: British School at Athens.

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                  Short, informative overview of the architecture of the palace of Knossos, with plans.

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                • Raison, Jacques. 1988–1993. Le palais du second millénaire à Knossos. 4 vols. Études Crétoises 28–29. Paris: Librairie Orientaliste Paul Geuthner.

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                  Systematic discussion of the architecture and functions of the north quarter, the western front, and the storage rooms of the palace of Knossos, based on a thorough reexamination of the evidence provided by the early excavations of Evans; fundamental for the study of Minoan Knossos.

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                • Tsipopoulou, Metaxia. 1997. Palace-centered polities in eastern Crete: Neopalatial Petras and its neighbors. In Urbanism in Antiquity: From Mesopotamia to Crete. Edited by Walter E. Aufrecht, N. A. Mirau, and S. W.Gauley, 263–277. Sheffield, UK: Sheffield Academic Press.

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                  Presentation of material on a small administrative center (“palace”) in Petras; instructive for the administrative structures in the periphery of Crete.

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                Society

                Archaeological evidence, parallels from analogous societies, and—only for the Mycenaean period—the information contained in the Linear B documents allow reconstructions, reliable to a certain extent, of central aspects of society in Bronze Age Crete (social hierarchy, elites, social rituals, dependent population, gender roles). The essays collected in Kryszkowska and Nixon 1983 and Laffineur and Niemeier 1995 reflect current research on these subjects. For what can be inferred from burial practices, see Branigan 1998. For society in Prepalatial Crete, see Prepalatial Crete and the Emergence of the State.

                • Branigan, Keith, ed. 1998. Cemetery and society in the Aegean Bronze Age. Sheffield, UK: Sheffield Academic Press.

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                  Collection of studies on how burial practices reflect social structures and developments in Minoan Crete.

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                • Kryszkowska, Olga, and Lucia Nixon, eds. 1983. Minoan society: Proceedings of the Cambridge Colloquium 1981. Bristol, UK: Bristol Classical Press.

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                  Collection of essays based on archaeological material, addressing a variety of subjects in social development (evolution of a complex society) and organization (kinship, elites).

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                • Laffineur, Robert, and Wolf-Dietrich Niemeier, eds. 1995. Politeia: Society and state in the Aegean Bronze Age; Proceedings of the 5th International Aegean Conference, Heidelberg 10–13 April 1994. Aegeum 12. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège.

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                  Collection of studies dedicated to various aspects of society in Minoan Crete. Keith Branigan, “Social transformations and the rise of the state in Crete” (33–42) is a thought-provoking attempt to reconstruct the process that led to the development of advanced administrative structures in Early Minoan Crete.

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                Economy

                No other subject of Minoan and Mycenaean Crete can be studied on the basis of sources as abundant and reliable as can economy, for which there are archaeological sources (workshops and production areas, products, exported and imported objects), written documents (Linear B texts), and field surveys, which provide a wealth of information especially on agriculture, pastoralism, and trade. Halstead 1992 is a stimulating introduction to the problems connected with the study of economy in the period of the Mycenaean palace administration, more generally (not only in Crete). Although there is no single systematic treatment of the economy in Minoan and Mycenaean Crete (but see Minoan and Mycenaean Crete: Overviews) collections of articles (Gillis, et al. 1995; Laffineur and Betancourt 1997) give a representative picture of sources, methods, and questions. The essays in Chaniotis 1999 offer a diachronic perspective on the study of Cretan economy.

                • Chaniotis, Angelos, ed. 1999. From Minoan farmers to Roman traders: Sidelights on the economy of ancient Crete. Stuttgart, Germany: Steiner.

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                  Collection of essays on the history of Cretan economy, including a large section (pp. 17–144) dedicated to aspects of Minoan economy (overview, social development and the economy in Prepalatial Crete, economic complexity, systems of measurement, foreign trade).

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                • Gillis, Carolle, Christina Risberg, and Birgitta Sjoberg, eds. 1995. Trade and production in premonetary Greece: Aspects of trade; Proceedings of the Third International Workshop, Athens, 1993. Jonsered, Sweden: Åström.

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                  Collection of essays concerning economy in the Bronze Age (including Crete).

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                • Halstead, Peter. 1992. The Mycenaean palatial economy: Making the most of the gaps in the evidence. Proceedings of the Cambridge Philological Society 38:57–86.

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                  A stimulating essay that addresses questions, sources (especially Linear B texts), and methods in the study of economy during the Mycenaean period (not only in Crete).

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                • Laffineur, Robert, and Philip P. Betancourt, eds. 1997. TEXNH: Craftsmen, craftswomen, and craftsmanship in the Aegean Bronze Age; Proceedings of the 6th International Aegean Conference, Philadelphia, Temple University, 18–21 April 1996. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège.

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                  Collection of studies concerning economy and production in the prehistoric Aegean, including Minoan and Mycenaean Crete. An important work of reference for every aspect of production and art, very important also for the study of Linear B documents and their contribution to a reconstruction of the palatial economy in Mycenaean Crete.

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                Villas

                Large building complexes, known by the misleading term “villas,” fulfilled a variety of functions in administration and economy, as discussed by contributors to Hägg 1997.

                • Hägg, Robin, ed. 1997. The function of the ‘Minoan villa’: Proceedings of the Eighth International Symposium at the Swedish Institute at Athens, 6–8 June 1992. Jonsered, Sweden: Åström.

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                  This volume assembles studies that present some of these buildings and critically examine their functions.

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                Agriculture

                Because of the nature of the evidence, the specialized production of oil (Blitzer 1993; Hamilakis 1996), also connected with the production of perfume (see Perfume Production) and wine (Hamilakis 1996), is better known and studied than other sectors of agriculture. Riley 1999 is important because it studies agriculture in association with nutrition in Minoan Crete.

                • Blitzer, Harriet. 1993. Olive cultivation and oil production in Minoan Crete. In La production du vin et de l’huile en Méditerranée. Edited by Marie-Claire Amouretti and J.-P. Brun, 163–176. Bulletin de Correspondance Hellénique Supp. 26. Paris: École française d’Athènes.

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                  Useful overview of the information provided by archaeological and documentary sources concerning one of the most important sectors of economic production in Minoan Crete.

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                • Hamilakis, Yannis. 1996. Wine, oil, and the dialectics of power in Bronze Age Crete: A review of the evidence. Oxford Journal of Archaeology 15:1–32.

                  DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-0092.1996.tb00071.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                  Stimulating discussion of the social significance of the production and consumption of wine and oil; useful also for its theoretical approach.

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                • Riley, F. R. 1999. The role of the traditional Mediterranean diet in the development of Minoan Crete. British Archaeological Reports, International Series 810. Oxford: Archaeopress.

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                  Important contribution to the understanding of economic activities in Minoan Crete, associating the evidence for nutrition and resources with economic activities such as agriculture (cereals, olive oil) and fishing.

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                Perfume Production

                The abundance of aromatic herbs and oil production in Crete were the foundation for the flourishing production of perfumes, which were also exported. Erard-Cerceau 1990 presents a very good overview.

                • Erard-Cerceau, Isabelle. 1990. Végétaux, parfumes et parfumeurs à l’époque mycénienne. Studi Micinei ed Egeo-anatolici 28:251–285.

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                  Good overview of the evidence provided by the Linear B tablets (not only on Crete) for the use of herbs and perfume production, a very important sector of Mycenaean economy and trade.

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                Pastoralism and Wool Industry

                The Linear B documents provide abundant information on the existence of large flocks of livestock and on the wool industry under the control of the palaces. Killen 1964 and Melena 1975 are pioneering studies of this subject; Burke 1997 gives a more up-to-date overview; Reid 2007 focuses on one particular region of eastern Crete and discusses theoretical issues connected with pastoral economy.

                • Burke, Brendan. 1997. The organization of textile production on Bronze Age Crete. In TEXNH: Craftsmen, craftswomen, and craftsmanship in the Aegean Bronze Age. Edited by Robert Laffineur and Philip P. Betancourt, Vol. 2, 413–422. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège, 1997.

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                  Up-to-date overview of the organization of one of the most important and best-known sectors of palatial economy.

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                • Killen, John. 1964. The wool industry of Crete in the late Bronze Age. Annual of the British School at Athens 59:1–15.

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                  A pioneering and still useful study of the contribution of Linear B texts to the reconstruction of economy in Mycenaean Crete.

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                • Melena, José L. 1975. Studies on some Mycenaean inscriptions from Knossos dealing with textiles. Minos Suplementos 5. Salamanca, Spain: Universidad de Salamanca.

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                  Detailed, technical study of Linear B texts concerning textile production.

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                • Reid, Judith. 2007. Minoan Kato Zakro: A pastoral economy. British Archaeological Reports International Series 1713. Oxford: Archaeopress.

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                  Thought-provoking attempt to interpret archaeological data from the palace of Zakros and its surrounding area in connection with pastoral activities; also includes a discussion of data concerning roads, peak sanctuaries, iconography, seals, and documents; generally convincing.

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                Craftsmanship

                Minoan and Mycenaean Crete are known for their advanced technology and production of pottery (see Pottery), bronze (Hakulin 2004), stone carving, and other items, for which the surviving artifacts provide clear evidence (see Art). The Mycenaean Linear B texts provide information on the organization of production under the supervision of the palace administration (see Mycenaean Administration). The studies collected in Laffineur and Betancourt 1997 give a representative picture.

                • Hakulin, Lena. 2004. Bronzeworking on Late Minoan Crete: A diachronic study. Oxford: Archaeopress.

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                  Useful general overview of bronzeworking, one of the most important sectors of Mycenaean craftsmanship; based on both archaeological material and texts.

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                • Laffineur, Robert, and Philip P. Betancourt, eds. 1997. TEXNH: Craftsmen, craftswomen, and craftsmanship in the Aegean Bronze Age; Proceedings of the 6th International Aegean Conference, Philadelphia, Temple University, 18–21 April 1996. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège, 1997.

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                  Collection of studies concerning the economy and production in the prehistoric Aegean (including Minoan and Mycenaean Crete). An important reference work for every aspect of production and art.

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                Trade

                Although the term “trade” may be anachronistic as a characterization of the exchange that took place between Minoan and Mycenaean Crete and other areas, archaeological and some textual evidence clearly shows that the exchange of goods was one of the most important aspects of economy during most parts of the Bronze Age. Very good overviews are given in Cline 1994 (for the Mycenaean period), Gale 1991, and Gillis, et al. 1995 (more generally, for the entire Aegean).

                • Cline, Eric. 1994. Sailing the wine-dark sea: International trade and the late Bronze Age Aegean. British Archaeological Reports, International Series 501. Oxford: Tempus Reparatum.

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                  Thorough collection of the primarily archaeological evidence for the exchange and export of goods in the Late Minoan period; important for understanding both the production on Crete and the island’s external relations.

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                • Gale, N. H., ed. 1991. Bronze Age trade in the Mediterranean: Papers presented at the conference held at Rewley House, Oxford, in December 1989. Jonsered, Sweden: Åström.

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                  Collection of essays examining exchange of goods in the Mediterranean, including articles concerning Minoan and Mycenaean Crete.

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                • Gillis, Carolle, C. Risberg, and B. Sjoberg, eds. 1995. Trade and production in premonetary Greece: Aspects of trade; Proceedings of the Third International Workshop, Athens, 1993. Jonsered, Sweden: Åström.

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                  Collection of essays on exchanges in Bronze Age Greece, including Crete.

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                External Relations

                Minoan and Mycenaean Crete maintained close relations not only with other parts of Greece and the Aegean, but also with Cyprus, Egypt, Asia Minor, and the Near East, and in certain periods also with the western Mediterranean. The study of these relations contributes to understanding Crete’s economy (trade) and cultural exchange.

                Crete, Mainland Greece, and the Aegean

                The glamour of Minoan art and its clear influence on mainland Greece and the Aegean islands led Arthur Evans to the idea of political control of these areas from Crete. Later discoveries made a reassessment of these relations necessary. Hägg and Marinatos 1984 and D’Agata and Moody 2005 collect a series of important essays on this subject; for a critical review, see also Wiener 1990. An interesting case study, illustrating the Minoan presence in Kythera, is presented in Sakellarakis 1996.

                • D’Agata, Anna Lucia, and Jennifer Moody, eds. 2005. Ariadne’s threads: Connections between Crete and the Greek mainland in Late Minoan III (LM IIIA2 to LM IIIC). Athens, Greece:Scuola Archeologica Italiana di Atene.

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                  Collection of essays concerning exchange of products and cultural contacts between Mycenaean Crete and Mycenaean Greece, but also essays on particular sites, climatic change, and identities; an important contribution to the study of the Late Bronze Age.

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                • Hägg, Robin, and Nanno Marinatos, eds. 1984. The Minoan thalassocracy: Myth and reality. Stockholm, Sweden: Swedish School at Athens.

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                  Collection of essays that critically review the nature of political, economic, and religious relations between Minoan Crete, mainland Greece, and the Aegean islands; a very important contribution to the ongoing discussion concerning the history of Minoan Crete.

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                • Sakellarakis, Yannis. 1996. Minoan religious influence in the Aegean: The case of Kythera. Annual of the British School at Athens 91:81–99.

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                  Brief presentation of the results of an excavation in Kythera.

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                • Wiener, Malcolm H. 1990. The isles of Crete? The Minoan thalassocracy revisited. In Thera and the Aegean World III, Vol. 1. Edited by David A. Hardy and A. C. Renfrew, 128–161. London: Thera Foundation.

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                  Critical review of early views concerning the nature of Minoan control in the Aegean.

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                Crete and Egypt

                Relations between Crete and Egypt in the Bronze Age are well attested through textual and archaeological sources: Egyptian texts mentioning and frescoes depicting populations and products of the Aegean (Duhoux 2003), Minoan frescoes found in Avaris (Bietak 1996a), Egyptian imports in Crete, and Cretan imports in Egypt (Kemp and Merrillees 1980). The nature of the relations is still debated. The essays in Bietak 1996b and Davies and Schofield 1995 give a good overview of the diversity of the relevant material and the problems of interpretation.

                • Bietak, Manfred. 1996a. Avaris, the capital of the Hyksos: Recent excavation at Tell el-Dab’a. London: British Museum Press.

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                  Findings of an excavation that revealed Minoan wall paintings, providing important evidence for close political and cultural relations between Minoan Crete and Egypt during the rule of the Hyksos (16th century BCE).

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                • Bietak, Manfred, ed. 1996b. Die Beziehungen zwischen Ägypten und der minoischen Welt. Vienna: Österreichische Akadademie der Wissenschaften.

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                  Important collection of essays concerning the diverse political, cultural, and economic relations between Minoan Crete and Egypt.

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                • Davies, Vivian W., and Louise Schofield, eds. 1995. Egypt, the Aegean and the Levant: Interconnections in the second millennium BC. London: British Museum Press.

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                  Collection of essays discussing relations between Minoan Crete and Egypt.

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                • Duhoux, Yves. 2003. Des Minoens en Égypte? ‘Keftiou’ et ‘les îles au milieu du grand vert’. Louvain, Belgium: Institut Orientaliste.

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                  Critical review of the Egyptian sources that refer to the “Keftiu,” usually identified as Minoan Cretans; an up-to-date and cautious survey of the sources; the author’s hypothesis that the Keftiu populated the Delta is debatable.

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                • Kemp, Barry J., and Robert S. Merrillees. 1980. Minoan pottery in second millennium Egypt. Mainz, Germany: Zabern.

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                  Collection of Minoan pottery found in Egypt; important for the study of the relations between Crete and Egypt.

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                • Phillips, Jacqueline. 2008. Aegyptiaca on the island of Crete in their chronological context: A critical review. 2 vols. Vienna: Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften.

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                  Collection of Egyptian objects imported to Minoan Crete, with a profound analysis of Egyptian influences on Minoan culture; important also for Minoan chronology.

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                • Vercoutter, Jean. 1956. L’Égypte et le monde égéen préhellénique. Étude critique des sources égyptiennes (du début de la XVIIIe à la fin de la XIXe dynastie). Cairo, Egypt: Institut Français d’Archéologie Orientale.

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                  Collection and discussion of the textual and iconographic references to Minoan Crete and Mycenaean Greece in Pharaonic Egypt (especially 17th–16th centuries BCE); the identity of the “Keftiu” and the nature of the contacts between Crete and Egypt are controversial subjects, but this groundbreaking work has not lost its value.

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                • Wachsmann, Shelley. 1987. Aegeans in the Theban tombs. Louvain, Belgium: Peeters.

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                  Discussion of the representation of gift bearers that can be identified as representatives of the Aegean world (Minoan Crete, Mycenaean Greece); useful reference work for Crete’s relations with Pharaonic Egypt.

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                Crete and the Orient

                Many archaeological (and few textual) sources attest to cultural and economic contacts of Crete with the Levant and the Near East. Cline and Harris-Cline 1998 presents a panorama of the relevant evidence.

                • Cline, Eric H., and Diane Harris-Cline, eds. 1998. The Aegean and the Orient in the second millennium: Proceedings of the 50th Anniversary Symposium, Cincinnati, 18–20 April 1997. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège.

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                  Collection of essays concerning economic and cultural contacts between the Aegean (including Crete) and the Near East; very useful as an introduction and an overview.

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                • Davies, Vivian W., and Louise Schofield, eds. 1995. Egypt, the Aegean and the Levant: Interconnections in the second millennium BC. London: British Museum Press.

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                  Collection of essays discussing relations between Minoan Crete and the Near East; an excellent panorama of the diverse cultural and economic contacts involved.

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                • Lambrou-Phillipson, C. 1990. Hellenorientalia: The Near Eastern presence in the Bronze Age Aegean, ca. 3000–1000 B.C., plus Orientalia: A catalogue of Egyptian etc. objects from BA Aegean. Göteborg, Sweden: Aströms.

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                  Collection of imports from Egypt, Phoenicia, and the Near East to Minoan and Mycenaean Crete; useful as a collection of sources for the study of external relations and trade.

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                Art

                Minoan and Mycenaean art belongs among the greatest artistic achievements in the Bronze Age Mediterranean and has naturally attracted much attention. Poursat 2008 is a very good overview of artistic developments until the mid-second millennium BCE. More emphasis has been placed on the study of specific types of artistic production (pottery, sculpture, architecture, etc.) than on the more general principles and features of Minoan art, but the studies collected in Darcque and Poursat 1985 are representative of main aspects of iconography; for the depiction of humans, see Wingerath 1995. Evely 1993–2001 is a useful introduction to the technical aspects of Minoan art.

                • Darcque, Pascal, and Jean-Claude Poursat, eds. 1985. L’iconographie minoenne: Actes de la Table Ronde d’Athènes (21–22 avril 1983). Bulletin de Correspondance Hellénique, Supp. 11. Paris: Boccard.

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                  Collection of essays on iconography in Minoan art (pottery, seals, frescoes); very useful as a first reference for studies on Minoan art; it reflects trends in the study of Minoan art history and provides a useful bibliography.

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                • Evely, Richard D. G. 1993–2001. Minoan crafts: Tools and techniques, an introduction. 2 vols. Göteborg, Sweden: Aström.

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                  Excellent introduction to the technical background of Minoan art discussing a wide range of subjects; very useful for students.

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                • Poursat, Jean-Claude. 2008. L’art égéen: Grèce, Cyclades, Crète jusqu’au milieu du IIe millénnaire av. J.-C. Paris: Picard.

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                  Masterly treatment of the development of art in Bronze Age Greece (including Crete), the various materials, techniques, and artistic expressions; useful also because it places Crete in the context of more general developments in the Aegean; an excellent introduction for students.

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                • Wingerath, Halina. 1995. Studien zur Darstellung des Menschen in der minoischen Kunst der älteren und jüngeren Palastzeit. Marburg, Germany: Tectum.

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                  Useful as an inventory of the types of human representation in Minoan art (scenes of everyday life, professionals, acrobats, warriors, dancers, priests, worshippers, etc.); accessible for students.

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                Architecture

                Minoan architecture is well known through the study of palaces (Palaces), villas (Villas), towns (Sites), sanctuaries, and funerary monuments. The main features of design and organization of space are studied in Shaw 1973, which remains a very good introduction for students, and in Hitchcock 2000 and Preziosi 1983.

                Pottery

                Minoan and Mycenaean pottery is one of the foundations of relative chronology; this explains why, among the various arts and crafts, pottery has been studied more intensively. Of course, in addition to its value for dating purposes, the stylistic changes in pottery reflect artistic developments, and the various shapes of vases are connected with specific functions in everyday life (e.g., cookware), trade (jars), and rituals (cups for banquets, rhytons for libations). Betancourt 1985 and Schiering 1998 sketch the development of pottery throughout the Bronze Age and are very good introductions for students. The development of pottery styles in Knossos (MacGillivray 1998; Momigliano 2007; Niemeier 1985) reflects more general changes of style and function as a point of reference for the study of pottery. Good overviews on the pottery of the Old Palace period are given in MacGillivray 1998, Poursat and Knappett 2005, Walberg 1976 and Walberg 1983, and for the period of the Mycenaean occupation in Niemeier 1985.

                • Betancourt, Philip P. 1985. The history of Minoan pottery. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press.

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                  Indispensable reference work for the study of Minoan pottery; very useful for students and as an introduction.

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                • MacGillivray, Joseph Alexander. 1998. Knossos: Pottery groups of the Old Palace period. London: British School at Athens.

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                  Study of the pottery of the Old Palace period in Knossos (shapes, decoration, chronology); important but somewhat technical.

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                • Momigliano, Nicoletta, ed. 2007. Knossos pottery handbook, Neolithic and Bronze Age (Minoan). London: British School at Athens.

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                  Very important reference work (also useful for students), summarizing the development of pottery (shapes, decoration, styles).

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                • Niemeier, Wolf-Dietrich. 1985. Die Palaststilkeramik von Knossos: Stil, Chronologie und historischer Kontext. Berlin: Mann.

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                  Groundbreaking study of the pottery from Knossos, with thorough analysis of shapes, decoration, and chronology; very instructive on methodological issues connected with the study of pottery.

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                • Poursat, Jean-Claude, and Paul Knappett. 2005. La poterie du Minoen Moyen II: Production et utilisation. Athens, Greece:École française d’Athènes.

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                  Study of the pottery of the Old Palace period at Mallia, with particular emphasis on workshops and the functions of various shapes; important as a work of reference.

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                • Schiering, Wolfgang. 1998. Minoische Töpferkunst: Die bemalten Tongefässe der Insel des Minos. Mainz, Germany: Philipp von Zabern.

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                  General introduction to Minoan pottery (shapes, types of vases, decoration); extremely useful for students as a first orientation, but also accessible for a general audience.

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                • Walberg, Gisela. 1976. Kamares: A study of the character of Palatial Middle Minoan pottery. Uppsala, Sweden: Univ. of Uppsala.

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                  Fundamental study of one of the most characteristic wares of the Minoan period, Kamares ware; discussion of its shapes, decoration, and chronology; an important reference work for the study of Minoan pottery.

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                • Walberg, Gisela. 1983. Provincial Middle Minoan pottery. Mainz, Germany: Philipp von Zabern.

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                  Good overview of pottery production in non-palatial settlements, its decoration and shapes; a work of reference for Minoan art, valuable because it concentrates on production centers beyond the palaces.

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                • Wiener, Malcolm and Philip P. Betancourt, eds. 2006. Pottery and society: The impact of recent studies in Minoan pottery. Boston: Archaeological Institute of America.

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                  Six essays concerning the social context of pottery production in Minoan Crete (production centers, social reproduction, storage pottery, Anatolian imports).

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                Sculpture

                Minoan sculpture was primarily of religious and cultic significance (dedications, cult objects, grave goods). Sapouna-Sakellaraki 1995, a thorough study of bronze human statuettes, is an excellent introduction to Minoan sculpture in connection with contemporary material in areas influenced by Minoan art. Verlinden 1984 is useful because of its diachronic perspective, considering later material until the 7th century BCE. Rethemiotakis 2001 studies figurines made of less expensive material than the contemporary metal statuettes. For one of the most important single finds, see MacGillivray, et al. 2000.

                • MacGillivray, Joseph Alexander, Jan M. Driessen, and L.H. Sackett. 2000. The Palaikastro Kouros: A Minoan chryselephantine statuette and its Aegean Bronze Age context. London: British School at Athens.

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                  Publication of details for, and in-depth analysis of, a very important find from Palaikastro in eastern Crete: an ivory statuette of a young man (or god?), that presents new evidence and puzzles concerning Minoan religion.

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                • Rethemiotakis, George. 2001. Minoan clay figures and figurines from the Neopalatial to the Subminoan period. Athens, Greece:Archaeological Society at Athens.

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                  Short, useful overview of the types of clay figures and figurines, their stylistic features, their iconography (dress, jewelry, hairstyles, gestures), and their religious functions; accessible for students.

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                • Sapouna-Sakellaraki, Efi. 1995. Die bronzenen Menschenfiguren auf Kreta und in der Ägäis. Stuttgart, Germany: Steiner.

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                  A catalogue of human bronze figurines, primarily from Crete but also from sites in mainland Greece, on the islands, and in Asia Minor, followed by a systematic and thorough analysis of all their features (workshops, style, gestures, dress, functions); a fundamental study of Minoan art, but also useful for studies of Minoan religion.

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                • Verlinden, Colette. 1984. Les statuettes anthropomorphes crétoises en bronze et en plomb du IIIe millénaire au VIIe siècle av. J.-C. Louvain, Belgium: Université Catholique de Louvain

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                  Extensive catalogue of bronze and lead statuettes, especially of the Minoan period; analysis of their typology, iconography, and functions; to be used together with Sapouna-Sakellaraki 1995.

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                Seals

                From the Prepalatial period onward, seals not only fulfilled important functions as expressions of ownership, status, and identity, but through their decoration they also provide information about craftsmanship (stone carving), artistic styles, religion (representations of deities and cult scenes), and society. Corpus der minoischen und mykenischen Siegel 1964– is a valuable collection of this material. Krzyszkowska 2005 is a thorough introduction.

                Stone Carving

                For stone carving, consult Warren 1969.

                Religion

                Minoan and Mycenaean religion has been intensively studied—quite naturally, since a large part of the excavated sites and the finds are directly or indirectly connected with religious beliefs and practices. Despite significant archaeological sources (representations of cult scenes, cult objects, dedications, cult places, etc.), names of gods mentioned in the Linear B texts in the Mycenaean period (see Linear B Documents), and some possible survivals in later religion (e.g., names of deities), little is certain about Minoan religion. Marinatos 1993 is the most comprehensive introduction to Minoan religion; Nilsson 1950 is out of date, but still readable and thought-provoking. For individual aspects, see Cult Places, Gods, and Rituals.

                • Marinatos, Nanno. 1993. Minoan religion: Image, ritual, symbol. Columbia: Univ. of South Carolina Press.

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                  Groundbreaking and readable study of various aspects of Minoan religion (divinities, rituals, sacred places, religious roles of women); the best systematic study of this subject, but necessarily speculative and controversial in some details.

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                • Nilsson, Martin P. 1950. The Minoan-Mycenaean religion and its survival into Greek religion. 2d ed. Lund, Sweden: Univ. of Lund.

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                  Written before the decipherment of the Linear B script, this book by one of the greatest historians of Greek religion has historical value as an attempt to reconstruct the religious beliefs and cult practices in Minoan Crete and in the Mycenaean world; instructive for its methodological approach and still very stimulating reading.

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                Cult Places

                Different types of cult places—caves (Faure 1964; Jones 1999; see also Idaean Cave and Psychro), shrines in palaces (Panagiotaki 1999), peak sanctuaries (Jones 1999; Kyriakidis 2006; Rutkowski 1991), household shrines (Gesell 1985), sacred enclosures (Lebessi and Muhly 1990), and others—are connected with different divinities, cults, and rituals. Rutkowski 1986 is a useful general overview, but the author’s interpretation of the character of cult activities is debatable. Gesell 1985 is a stimulating study of cults in different topographical and social contexts (towns, palaces, caves).

                • Faure, Paul. 1964. Fonctions des cavernes crétoises. Paris: Boccard.

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                  Presentation of the author’s research on the topography and functions of caves used for cult activities in Minoan and later Crete; an important study, although some of the author’s views are controversial.

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                • Gesell, Geraldine. 1985. Town, palace, and house cult in Minoan Crete. Göteborg, Sweden: Astrom.

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                  Attempt to reconstruct religious practices in Minoan Crete, distinguishing between cults performed in the household, rituals in the palaces, and cult activities in towns.

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                • Jones, Donald W. 1999. Peak sanctuaries and sacred caves in Minoan Crete: A comparison of artifacts. Jonsered, Sweden: Åström.

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                  Study of finds in peak sanctuaries and cult caves as evidence that can determine the nature of the cults practiced in these places; stimulating and useful as a collection of sources.

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                • Kyriakidis, Evangelos. 2006. Ritual in the Bronze Age Aegean: The Minoan peak sanctuaries. London: Duckworth.

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                  Attempt to reconstruct the ritual activities in peak sanctuaries on the basis of finds and representations in art; thought-provoking and significant also for social organization, but ultimately speculative because of the lack of narrative sources.

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                • Lebessi, Angeliki, and Polymnia Muhly. 1990. Aspects of Minoan cult: Sacred enclosures, the evidence from the Syme sanctuary (Crete). Archäologischer Anzeiger 1990:315–336.

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                  Discussion of the function of sacred enclosures in Minoan religion.

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                • Panagiotaki, Marina. 1999. The central palace sanctuary at Knossos. London: British School at Athens.

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                  Meticulous study of finds from a complex of rooms and repositories near the throne room in Knossos, probably furniture from a shrine. An important contribution to the study of religious ceremonies in the palace of Knossos.

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                • Rutkowski, Bogdan. 1986. The cult places of the Aegean. New Haven, CT: Yale Univ. Press.

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                  Panorama of various types of cult places in the Aegean world, including Crete; a useful reference work for students.

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                • Rutkowski, Bogdan. 1991. Petsophas: A Cretan peak sanctuary. Warsaw, Poland: Art and Archaeology.

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                  Catalogue of the finds (figurines, anatomical votives, cult objects) from an important cult place in eastern Crete (Petsophas, near Palaikastro); these dedications are associated with the wish of the worshippers to find healing and divine protection for their livestock.

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                • Sakellarakis, Yannis, and Efi Sapouna-Sakellaraki. 1997. Archanes: Minoan Crete in a new light. 2 vols. Athens, Greece:Ammos.

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                  Presentation of the results of archaeological research in Archanes, including an important find: human sacrifice in a building interpreted as a temple in Anemospilia.

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                Gods

                The Linear B texts provide reliable information on the divinities worshipped in Mycenaean Crete in the areas controlled by the palace of Knossos; this information has been collected in Gérard-Rousseau 1968. Reconstruction of the Minoan pantheon is based on iconography (representations of gods, goddesses, and demons) and on some information provided by later sources on pre-Hellenic deities (e.g., Britomartis, Diktynna). The essays in Laffineur and Hägg 2001 are a good introduction to the sources, approaches, and problems in the study of gods in Minoan and Mycenaean Crete and beyond. Moss 2005 is the most recent attempt to interpret this evidence. McGillivray, et al. 2000 discusses one of the most important new finds (a statuette possibly representing a young god) in connection with Aegean religious beliefs.

                • Gérard-Rousseau, Monique. 1968. Les mentions religieuses dans les tablettes mycéniennes. Incunabula Graeca 29. Rome: Ateneo.

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                  Collection of references to divinities in the Linear B texts (including those of Knossos); an indispensable reference work for Mycenaean religion, though new material has come to light in the years since the book’s publication.

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                • Laffineur, Robert, and Robin Hägg, eds. 2001. Potnia: Deities and religion in the Aegean Bronze Age; Proceedings of the 8th International Aegean Conference/ 8e Rencontre Égéenne Internationale, Göteborg, Göteborg University, 12–15 April 2000. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège.

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                  Numerous essays that present a very good panorama of deities in Minoan and Mycenaean Crete and in adjacent areas; the range of subjects discussed and the heterogeneity of the approaches make this volume a good introduction to the problems of the study of Bronze Age religions.

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                • MacGillivray, Joseph Alexander, Jan M. Driessen, and L. H. Sackett. 2000. The Palaikastro Kouros: A Minoan chryselephantine statuette and its Aegean Bronze Age context. London: British School at Athens.

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                  Publication of information on, and in-depth analysis of, a very important find from Palaikastro in eastern Crete: an ivory statuette of a young man (or god?), that presents new evidence (and puzzles) concerning Minoan religion and its survival in later Cretan religion.

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                • Moss, Marina L. 2005. The Minoan pantheon: Towards an understanding of its nature and extent. Oxford: Hedges.

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                  Up-to-date and solid discussion of the divinities worshipped in Minoan Crete and the nature of their cult.

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                Rituals

                Reconstructions of religious and social rituals in Minoan Crete are based on representations of cult scenes, other archaeological evidence (cult objects, architectural remains), anthropological parallels, and assumptions concerning possible survivals; for the Mycenaean period, one may add the information contained in the Linear B texts. Marinatos 1993 and Warren 1988 are stimulating and cautious attemps to study rituals in Minoan Crete; Kyriakidis 2006 hypothesizes about the rituals performed in peak sanctuaries. For a possible human sacrifice, see Sakellarakis and Sapouna-Sakellaraki 1997.

                • Kyriakidis, Evangelos. 2006. Ritual in the Bronze Age Aegean: The Minoan peak sanctuaries. London: Duckworth.

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                  Attempt to reconstruct the ritual activities in peak sanctuaries on the basis of finds and representations in art; thought-provoking and significant also for social organization, but ultimately speculative because of the lack of narrative sources.

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                • Marinatos, Nanno. 1993. Minoan religion: Image, ritual, symbol. Columbia: Univ. of South Carolina Press.

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                  Groundbreaking and readable study of the various aspects of Minoan religion (divinities, rituals, sacred places, religious roles of women); the best systematic study of this subject, but necessarily speculative and controversial in some details.

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                • Sakellarakis, Yannis, and Efi Sapouna-Sakellaraki. 1997. Archanes: Minoan Crete in a new light. 2 vols. Athens, Greece:Ammos.

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                  Presentation of the evidence for human sacrifice in a building (a temple?) at Anemospilia, near Archanes.

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                • Warren, Peter. 1988. Minoan religion as ritual action. Göteborg, Sweden: Aström.

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                  Short, stimulating discussion of the primarily iconographical evidence for the significance of rituals in Minoan religion.

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                Funerary Cult

                The study of funerary practices is very important for understanding both the social structure (family, kinship, hierarchy, elites) and existence of beliefs concerning the afterlife. Important groups of graves have been excavated and studied in Archanes, Mallia, Mochlos, and Pseira (see Sites); a very important group of graves, especially of the Early Bronze Age, is known to exist in the plain of Mesara (Branigan 1970; Xanthudides 1924); large groups of archaeological evidence are studied in Lowe 1996 and Soles 1992. Inspiring contributions to the study of funerary practices and rituals have been presented in Branigan 1993 and Pini 1968; see also Religion.

                • Branigan, Keith. 1970. The tombs of Mesara: A story of funerary architecture and ritual in southern Crete, 2800–1700. London: Duckworth.

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                  Fundamental study of the architecture, finds, and sociocultural context of a group of Early Minoan graves in the plain of Mesara.

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                • Branigan, Keith. 1993. Dancing with death: Life and death in southern Crete, c. 3000–2000 BC. Amsterdam: Hakkert.

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                  Collection of studies of various aspects of funerary rituals by a leading expert in this area.

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                • Lowe, Wanda. 1996. Spätbronzezeitliche Bestattungen auf Kreta. British Archaeological Reports International Series 642. Oxford: British Archaeological Reports.

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                  Useful collection and analysis of archaeological sources for funerary practices in the Late Bronze Age.

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                • Pini, Ingo. 1968. Beiträge zur minoischen Gräberkunde. Wiesbaden: Steiner.

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                  Still a very useful overview of the funerary practices (types of graves, funerary rituals) in Minoan Crete during and after the palaces.

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                • Soles, Jeffrey S. 1992. The Prepalatial cemeteries at Mochlos and Gournia and the house tombs of Bronze Age Crete. Hesperia Supp. 24. Princeton, NJ: American School of Classical Studies at Athens.

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                  Systematic study of two important cemeteries in Gournia and Mochlos, and of house tombs in various sites (Agia Triada, Archanes, Knossos, Mallia, Myrtos, Palaikastro, Zakros, etc.); very important for the study of funerary architecture, ritual offerings, and social structure.

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                • Xanthudides, Stephanos. 1924. The vaulted tombs of Mesará: An account of some early cemeteries of southern Crete. Translated by J. P. Droop. London: Hodder and Stoughton.

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                  The first detailed presentation on the vaulted tombs of Mesara, by a pioneer of Cretan archaeology; although out of date in many respects (e.g., chronology), still readable in regard to the reconstruction of funerary practices and instructive as a monument of the history of Cretan archaeology. Reprinted Farnborough: Gregg, 1971.

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                Dark Ages (C. 1200–900 BCE)

                A period of four centuries with no written sources (the “Dark Ages”) brought substantial changes in Crete. The homogeneous administrative structure of Minoan and Mycenaean Crete was abandoned, resulting in economic decline, limited trade, and insecurity. Crete was affected by waves of migrants and raids (c. 1200–1000 BCE). The latest immigrants were Dorian groups. Small, naturally protected settlements in the highlands reflect a feeling of insecurity. The economy was primarily oriented toward subsistence, with small-scale exchanges of surplus and only limited trade with areas outside Crete. Important areas of research include the external relations of Crete and settlement patterns.

                Overviews

                Crete in the Dark Ages is known almost exclusively in light of archaeological sources. Dickinson 2006 is a reliable handbook, readable and up-to-date. Deger-Jalkotzy and Lemos 2006 is a very useful collection of essays reflecting current research trends. The short essays in Musti, et al. 1991 cover many important aspects and provide further bibliography. Desborough 1972, although aged, has not lost its value as stimulating reading.

                • Deger-Jalkotzy, Sigrid, and Irene S. Lemos, eds. 2006. Ancient Greece: From the Mycenaean palaces to the age of Homer. Edinburgh, Scotland: Edinburgh Univ. Press.

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                  Collection of essays that discuss political organization, society, economy, and culture from the Mycenaean period to the 8th century BCE; up-to-date, reliable, and suitable for students.

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                • Desborough, V. R. d’A. 1972. The Greek Dark Ages. London: Benn.

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                  A still readable handbook on the major developments during the Dark Ages in Greece, useful for placing Crete in a more general context.

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                • Dickinson, Oliver T. P. K. 2006. The Aegean from Bronze Age to Iron Age: Continuity and change between the twelfth and eighth centuries B.C. London: Routledge.

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                  General introduction to the Dark Ages and the Geometric period (including Crete), suitable for undergraduate students.

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                • Musti, Domenico, ed. 1991. La transizione dal miceneo all’alto arcaismo: Dal palazzo alla città. Atti del Convegno Internazionale Roma, 14–19 Marzo 1988. Rome: Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche.

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                  Collection of essays by leading scholars that discuss the most important aspects of political organization, society, economy, and culture from the Mycenaean period (also in Mycenaean Crete) to the Early Archaic period; several articles are dedicated to Cretan sites; an indispensable work of reference for these periods.

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                Settlement

                Changes in settlement patterns reflect changes in political structures, society, and economy in Crete during this period. Nowicki 2000 is a fundamental study, focusing on “defensible settlements”; Nowicki 1999 discusses the economic aspects of life in these settlements; an interesting case study is presented in Haggis 1993.

                • Haggis, Donald. 1993. Intensive survey, traditional settlement patterns, and Dark Age Crete: The case of early Iron Age Kavousi. Journal of Mediterranean Archaeology 6:131–174.

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                  Although focusing on a single area in eastern Crete, this article is a good introduction to settlement patterns in the Dark Ages and in the Early Geometric period.

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                • Nowicki, Krzysztof. 1999. Economy of refugees: Life in the Cretan mountains at the turn of the Bronze and Iron ages. In From Roman farmers to Minoan traders: Sidelights on the economy of ancient Crete. Edited by Angelos Chaniotis, 145–171. Stuttgart, Germany: Steiner.

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                  Reconstruction of the economy at Karphi, a representative “defensible settlement” in Dark Age Crete; an instructive example of how archaeological finds can contribute to the study of economy.

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                • Nowicki, Krzysztof. 2000. Defensible sites in Crete c. 1200–800 B.C. Aegeum 21. Liège, Belgium: Univ. de Liège, 2000.

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                  The best study of settlement patterns in the Dark Ages and the Geometric period, dedicated to a widespread type of settlements (sometimes described as “settlements of refuge”); very good discussion of the possible military and economic significance of these sites.

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                External Relations

                The changing patterns in the presence of foreign imports in Crete reflect changes in the external relations of the island, but also in its economy. Hoffman 1997 and Jones 2000 have presented very useful collections of the relevant material, the basis of any further research on this field.

                • Hoffman, Gail Lynette. 1997. Imports and immigrants: Near Eastern contacts with Iron Age Crete. Ann Arbor: Univ. of Michigan Press.

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                  Focusing on imported material (especially metal luxury objects) from the Near East in the Dark Ages and in the Geometric period, this book addresses the complex question of the nature of the cultural contacts between Crete and the Near East (exchange of goods; trade; migration of craftsmen).

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                • Jones, Donald W. 2000. External relations of early Iron Age Crete, 1100–600 B.C. Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt.

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                  Very useful reference work that presents the archaeological material (mostly imports from the Near East and Egypt) suggesting exchanges between Crete and other areas; useful for the study of both art history and culture.

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                Religion

                For religion in the Dark Ages, consult Prent 2005.

                • Prent, Mieke. 2005. Cretan sanctuaries and cults: Continuity and change from Late Minoan III C to the Archaic period. Leiden, The Netherlands: Brill.

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                  Thorough study of the archaeological evidence concerning Cretan sanctuaries, their function, changes in cult practices, and what survives from the destruction of the palaces to the 6th century BCE; an important work of reference for Cretan religion.

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                The Cretan Renaissance

                The “Cretan Renaissance” comprises several phases of art history (Protogeometric, Geometric, Orientalizing, Early Archaic Crete), which in many respects constitute a single historical period of stability and growth. The cultural growth from c. 900 to c. 650 BCE is closely connected with the presence of Phoenicians (craftsmen, traders, and perhaps settlers). Visible signs of cultural influence from the Near East are motifs, techniques, and stylistic features in art (the “Orientalizing period,” c. 710–630 BCE) and the adaptation of the Phoenician alphabet (c. 800 BCE). Archaeological finds attest to complex social institutions (elite warriors, transition rites performed by ephebes), the concentration of population in urban centers, and the emergence of the polis. For important excavated sites of this period, see Sites (Gortyn, Eleutherna, the Idaean Cave, Knossos, Kommos).

                Overviews

                In this period Crete was a pioneer in art and culture and is best studied in connection with contemporary developments in the Aegean and mainland Greece. Dickinson 2006 is an up-to-date general introduction. Lemos 2003 presents an excellent overview of the earlier phases of this period. Musti, et al. 1991 collects important essays dedicated to political and cultural developments of this period, but also articles that discuss the situation in important Cretan sites. Karageorghis and Stampolidis 1998 (External Relations) collects several essays.

                • Dickinson, Oliver P. T. K.. 2006. The Aegean from Bronze Age to Iron Age: Continuity and change between the twelfth and eighth centuries B.C. London: Routledge.

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                  General introduction to the Dark Ages and the Geometric period (including Crete), suitable for undergraduate students.

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                • Lemos, Irene S. 2003. The Protogeometric Aegean: The archaeology of the late eleventh and tenth centuries BC. Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press.

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                  An excellent overview of the archaeological evidence (architecture, art, settlement) from the transitional period from the Dark Ages to the Renaissance.

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                • Musti, Domenico, ed. 1991. La transizione dal miceneo all’alto arcaismo: Dal palazzo alla città. Atti del Convegno Internazionale Roma, 14–19 Marzo 1988. Rome: Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche.

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                  Collection of essays by leading scholars that discuss the most important aspects of political organization, society, economy, and culture from the Mycenaean period (also in Mycenaean Crete) to the Early Archaic period; an indispensable work of reference for these periods.

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                Political Organization

                In the 8th century BCE the erection of temples and the emergence of large cemeteries indicate the concentration of population in urban centers (early poleis) with citadels, temples, market spaces, and distinct quarters. A decree of Dreros forbidding iteration in office (c. 650–600 BCE) applies the term “polis” in the meaning “citizen-body.” Kotsonas 2002 is a solid attempt to reconstruct the process that led to the emergence of the polis; Sjögren 2003 is a very good survey of the archaeological evidence from approximately 300 sites.

                • Kotsonas, Antonios. 2002. The rise of the polis in central Crete. Eulimene 3:37–74.

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                  Very good overview of the archaeological evidence for the emergence of organized settlements with political structures in the Early Archaic period.

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                • Sjögren, Lena. 2003. Cretan locations. Discerning site variations in Iron Age and Archaic Crete (800–500 B.C.). BAR Int. Series 1185. Oxford: Archaeopress.

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                  Thorough collection of the archaeologocal evidence for the development of organized settlements and the formation of “polis” communities in Late Geometric and Archaic Crete.

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                Society

                The social organization of Crete in this period must have been analogous to that known from the Late Archaic and later periods (see Late Archaic and Classical Crete). An important aspect of social organization, the rites of passage for young men, has been studied in Lebessi 1991 on the basis of finds from the sanctuary in Symi Viannou (see also Symi Viannou and Late Archaic and Classical Crete).

                • Lebessi, Angeliki. 1991. Flagellation ou autoflagellation. Données iconographiques pour une tentative d’interpretation. Bulletin de Correspondance Hellénique 115:103–123.

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                  Presentation and interpretation of a group of images that attest to a ritual of flagellation performed by young men as a rite of passage in Early Iron Age Crete.

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                External Relations

                One of the most significant aspects of this period is the intensification of contacts with the Near East (import of raw material and artifacts, presence of foreign traders and craftsmen, cultural influence). Jones 2000 is an up-to-date collection and discussion of the relevant evidence. Karageorghis and Stampolidis 1998 assembles essays discussing important aspects of this exchange, especially contacts with the Phoenicians. The possible presence of Phoenician traders, craftsmen, and even immigrants in Crete (late 9th–early 7th centuries BCE) has prompted one of the most exciting discussions of recent decades. Shaw 1989 (also Shaw 1998) was a pioneering study. Stampolidis and Kotsonas 2006 summarizes the results of recent research.

                • Jones, Donald W. 2000. External relations of early Iron Age Crete, 1100–600 B.C. Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt.

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                  Very useful reference work presenting the archaeological material (mostly imports from the Near East and Egypt) that suggests exchanges between Crete and other areas; useful for the study of both art history and culture.

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                • Karageorghis, Vassos, and Nikolaos Stampolidis, eds. 1998. Proceedings of the International Symposium Eastern Mediterranean: Cyprus–Dodecannese–Crete, 16th–6th cent. B.C. Athens, Greece:Univ. of Crete.

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                  Collection of studies dedicated to the relations of Crete with adjacent areas, mainly in the Geometric and Orientalizing periods (especially H. Matthäus, “Cyprus and Crete in the early first millennium B.C.,” 127–156); it contains studies on the possible presence of Phoenicians in Crete (Nikolaos C. Stampolidis, “On the Phoenician presence in the Aegean,” 217–232; G. Markoe, “The Phoenicians on Crete: Transit trade and the search for ores,” 233–240; Nota Kourou and Alexandra Karetsou, “An enigmatic stone from Knossos. A reused cippus?” 243–253).

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                • Shaw, Joseph W. 1989. Phoenicians in southern Crete. American Journal of Archaeology 93:165–183.

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                  Presentation of archaeological evidence for the existence of a Phoenician cult site in the sanctuary at Kommos; a pioneering contribution to the study of Phoenician presence in Crete. See also Shaw 1998 and Kommos.

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                • Shaw, Joseph W. 1998. Der phönizische Schrein in Kommos auf Kreta (ca. 800 v. Chr.). In Archäologische Studien in Kontaktzonen der antiken Welt. Edited by R. Rolle and K. Schmidt, 93–104. Göttingen, Germany: Vandenhoeck und Ruprecht.

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                  Brief presentation of findings suggesting a small cult site in Kommos, plausibly interpreted as having been used by Phoenician traders or immigrants. See also Shaw 1989 and Kommos.

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                • Stampolidis, Nikolaos C., and Antonios Kotsonas. 2006. Phoenicians in Crete. In Ancient Greece: From the Mycenaean palaces to the age of Homer. Edited by Sigrid Deger-Jalkotzy and Irene S. Lemos, 337–360. Edinburgh, Scotland: Edinburgh Univ. Press.

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                  Up-to-date collection of the evidence (mainly from Eleutherna) for the presence of Phoenician immigrants and craftsmen in 8th–7th-century Crete.

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                Religion

                For religion during the Cretan Renaissance, consult Prent 2005.

                • Prent, Mieke. 2005. Cretan sanctuaries and cults: Continuity and change from Late Minoan III C to the Archaic period. Leiden, The Netherlands: Brill.

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                  Thorough study of the archaeological evidence concerning Cretan sanctuaries, their function, changes in cult practices, and what survives from the destruction of the palaces to the 6th century BCE; an important reference work for Cretan religion.

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                Art

                From the 9th century to the the late 6th BCE, Crete was a pioneer in the development of Greek art (metalworking, sculpture). For this reason Cretan art of this period is studied in close connection with the general development of Greek art. Coldstream 2003 is an excellent introduction to the Geometric period; Blome 1982 covers the main artistic develompents in the Geometric and Early Archaic period; Morris 1992 is a very good introduction to the art and, more generally, to the culture of the Early Archaic period. Important works of art that have inspired much discussion in connection with artistic evolution in the Geometric, Orientalizing, and Early Archaic periods include the female statue of Astritsi (Davaras 1972, a pioneering study), the architectural sculpture of the temples of Dreros and Prinias (Beyer 1976), Oriental and Orientalizing bronze shields and bowls (Canciani 1970; see also Idaean Cave), the funerary reliefs of Prinias (Lebessi 1976), and the bronze dedication from the sanctuary of Symi Viannou (see Symi Viannou).

                • Beyer, Immo. 1976. Die Tempel von Dreros und Prinias A und die Chronologie der kretischen Kunst des 8. und 7. Jh. v. Chr. Freiburg, Germany: Beyer.

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                  Attempt at a reconstruction of the architecture and the sculptural decoration of two of the best-known temples of early Crete; important study for the still controversial issue of the chronology of art in the 8th and 7th centuries BCE.

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                • Blome, Peter. 1982. Die figürliche Bildwelt Kretas in der geometrischen und früharchaischen Periode. Mainz, Germany: Zabern.

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                  Very useful overview of the themes represented in Cretan art (sculpture, pottery, metalworking) in the 9th–7th centuries BCE with a thorough analysis of the stylistic features of the main representatives of Cretan art in this period.

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                • Canciani, Fulvio. 1970. Bronzi orientali o orientalizzanti a Creta nell’VIII e VII sec. a.C. Rome: L’Erma di Bretschneider.

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                  Important study of Cretan metallurgy in the Geometric and Orientalizing periods; the chronology of the artifacts is contested.

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                • Coldstream, Nicholas. 2003. Geometric Greece: 900–700 B.C. 2d ed. London: Routledge.

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                  An unsurpassed survey of Geometric art; an indispensable reference book.

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                • Davaras, Costis. 1972. Die Statue aus Astritsi: ein Beitrag zur dädalischen Kunst auf Kreta und zu den Anfängen der griechischen Plastik. Bern, Switzerland: Francke.

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                  A pioneering work in the study of the stylistic features of Early Archaic Cretan sculpture.

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                • Kunze, Emil. 1931. Kretische Bronzereliefs. Stuttgart, Germany: Kohlhammer.

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                  Publication of details on, and study of, shields and bowls with relief decoration from the Idaean Cave (c. 800–600 BCE); these bronze reliefs show strong influence from Assyria and the Near East and are among the most important representatives of Cretan craftsmanship in the Geometric and Early Archaic periods. The date of these objects is still a matter of controversy. More material was found during the excavations of 1982–1986 (still unpublished).

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                • Lebessi, Angeliki. 1976. Hoi steles tou Prinia. Athens, Greece:Archaeological Society at Athens.

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                  Thorough analysis of a group of relief funerary stelae from Prinias; a very important contribution to the study of Cretan Archaic art.

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                • Morris, Sarah P. 1992. Daidalos and the origins of Greek art. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press.

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                  Well-written general introduction to the art of the Orientalizing period; suitable for students.

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                Pottery

                The study of pottery in this period is important both as an expression of the main artistic trends and for chronology. Coldstream 2008 is the most important reference work. Local pottery workshops have been studied in Kotsonas 2008 (with very good bibliography) and Rizza, et al. 1992.

                • Coldstream, Nicholas. 2008. Greek geometric pottery: A survey of ten local styles and their chronology. 2d ed. Exeter, UK: Bristol Phoenix Press.

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                  General survey of important pottery styles of the Geometric period, including Geometric Crete; a classic.

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                • Kotsonas, Antonis. 2008. The archaeology of tomb A1K1 of Orthi Petra in Eleutherna: The early Iron Age pottery. Athens, Greece:Univ. of Crete.

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                  Publication concerning the pottery finds from an important excavation (necropolis at Eleutherna); useful survey of pottery in the Geometric period, where one can find further bibliography.

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                • Rizza, Giovanni, Dario Palermo, and Francesco Tomasello. 1992. Mandra di Gipari: Una officina protoarcaica di vasai nel territorio di Prinias. Catania, Italy: Università di Catania.

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                  Publication on the finds from a pottery workshop near Prinias; important for the study of Early Archaic pottery.

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                Late Archaic and Classical Crete (C. 630–336 BCE)

                Crete’s cultural and economic growth came to an abrupt end around 630–600 BCE. Trade and craftsmanship lost their innovative power. Although Crete was never isolated from the rest of Greece and participated in the transit trade between Athens and the Peloponnese and North Africa, its contacts with other Greek areas were not impressive. Many legal documents of the period treat constitutional matters, the administration of justice, family law, property law (debts, the economic rights of women), the rights of foreign craftsmen, and cult. The longest and best-preserved is the “law code” of Gortyn (c. 450 BCE). These early laws aimed at preventing conflicts by setting out strict rules for the exercise of political power, defining social and legal positions, and delimiting the rights and privileges of citizens, foreigners, women, landowners, dependent farmers, dependent communities, and various categories of slaves. Naturally, most studies of this period are dedicated to aspects of history and culture that can be studied with the help of written sources, primarily inscriptions.

                Overviews

                The most comprehensive study of Cretan history, political institutions, and society remains Willetts 1955; in many details it has been surpassed by more recent research, but it has never been replaced. Van Effenterre 1948 is still useful for Crete in the late Classical and Hellenistic periods. Kirsten 1942 is also still useful because it contains and discusses all the important sources. Link 1994 discusses only the social and political institutions.

                • Kirsten, Ernst. 1942. Das dorische Kreta I. Die Insel Kreta im 5. und 4. Jh. Würzburg, Germany: Triltsch.

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                  Although badly written and structured, this book remains one of the few studies of Cretan political history, political organization, and society in the Classical period. Its greatest strength is the book’s focus on historical geography.

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                • Link, Stefan. 1994. Das griechische Kreta: Untersuchungen zu seiner staatlichen und gesellschaftlichen Entwicklung vom 6. bis zum 4. Jahrhundert v. Chr. Stuttgart, Germany: Steiner.

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                  Reconstruction of the political and social system of Crete (6th–4th centuries BCE) based on the epigraphic evidence (mainly from Gortyn) and the information provided by Aristotle; some of the interpretations are debatable.

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                • van Effenterre, Henri. 1948. La Crète et le mond grec de Platon a Polybe. Paris: Boccard.

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                  Groundbreaking study of the political history, institutions, and society of Crete from the 4th to the 1st centuries BCE; still an important reference work.

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                • Willetts, Ronald F. 1955. Aristocratic society in ancient Crete. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.

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                  A systematic study of political and social institutions mainly in Archaic, Classical, and Hellenistic Crete; in its time a pioneering work, thought-provoking and offering a unique panorama, it should now be consulted together with more recent studies.

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                Political Organization

                Despite differences in details, the general social and political order of the numerous Cretan poleis seems to have been the same, possibly the result of an artificial homogenization c. 600 BCE (Chaniotis 2005; Perlman 1992). The political geography of Crete has been reconstructed in Perlman 2004; for a particular type of semi-autonomous city, see Perlman 1996; for the phenomenon of territorial expansion, see Viviers 1994. Gehrke 1997 gives a short, excellent characterization of the artistocratic structures. The information provided by Plato, clearly an idealization of Cretan political institutions, has been studied in Morrow 1960. See also Late Archaic and Classical Crete: Overviews.

                • Bile, Monique. 1988. Le dialecte crétois ancien: Étude de la langue des inscriptions. Recueil des inscriptions postérieures aux IC. Paris: Boccard.

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                  Systematic discussion of the linguistic features of the Cretan inscriptions (7th–1st centuries BCE), which contains also discussion of the terms connected with the Cretan political and social institutions; useful as a reference work.

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                • Chaniotis, Angelos. 2005. The Great Inscription, its political and social institutions, and the common institutions of the Cretans. In La Grande Iscrizione di Gortyna: Centoventi anni dopo la scoperta; Atti del I Convegno Internazionale di Studi sulla Messarà. Edited by Emmanuele Greco and Mario Lombardo, 175–194. Athens, Greece:Scuola Archaeologica Italiana di Atene.

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                  Short overview of the main political and social institutions of Archaic and Classical Crete, the differences between the poleis, and the common features the author assigns to an artificial homogenization in the late 7th century BCE; useful bibliography.

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                • Gehrke, Hans-Joachim. 1997. Gewalt und Gesetz: Die soziale und politische Ordnung Kretas in der Archaischen und Klassischen Zeit. Klio 79:23–68.

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                  The best short description of the main features of aristocratic society and constitution in Crete (7th–4th centuries BCE), especially on how law and social norms imposed aristocratic ideals.

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                • Morrow, Glenn R. 1960. Plato’s Cretan city. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press.

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                  Good commentary on the information provided by Plato concerning Cretan political institutions; better in the philosophical analysis of Plato’s conception of an ideal state than in the historical analysis of information, which is often inaccurate, exaggerated, and not suitable for generalization.

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                • Perlman, Paula. 1992. One hundred-citied Crete and the ‘Cretan politeia’. Classical Philology 87:193–205.

                  DOI: 10.1086/367308Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                  Cautious criticism of the often inaccurate information provided by the literary sources concerning the political institutions of Cretan cities.

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                • Perlman, Paula. 1996. Polis hypekoos: The dependent polis and Crete. In Introduction to an inventory of poleis. Edited by Mogens Herman Hansen, 233–285. Copenhagen, Denmark: Munksgaard.

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                  Discussion of a particular type of Cretan polis: semi-autonomous settlements whose rights were determined by a sovereign city-state, to which the dependent polis fulfilled a variety of obligations (e.g., payment of tribute). These dependent poleis are better known in Hellenistic Crete (see Hellenistic Period).

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                • Perlman, Paula. 2004. Crete. In An inventory of Archaic and Classical poleis. Edited by Mogens Herman Hansen and Thomas H. Nielsen, 1144–1195. Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press.

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                  Survey of the poleis of Crete in the Archaic and Classical periods, with overview of their history and reference to the main sources; indispensable for all studies of Crete in this period.

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                • Viviers, Didier. 1994. La cité de Dattalla et l’expansion de Lyktos en Crète centrale. Bulletin de Correspondance Hellénique 118:229–259.

                  DOI: 10.3406/bch.1994.1668Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                  Thorough study of territorial dynamics in Archaic and Classical Crete through the study of the expansion of the city of Lyttos.

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                Society

                Cretan society was characterized by aristocratic structures (see Late Archaic and Classical Crete: Overviews). The citizen-body consisted of warriors who owned land, which was divided into lots and cultivated by an unfree population. The requirements for citizenship included legitimate birth in a family of citizens; participation in social and military training culminating in rites of transition (Gehrke 1997; Leitao 1995, Tzifopoulos 1998; see also Symi Viannou and Late Archaic and Classical Crete: Religion; membership in a military unit (tribe, startos); membership in a men’s group; and attendance at common meals (syssitia) in “men’s houses” (andreia), funded through contributions by the citizens, serfs, and public revenue (Lavrencic 1988). An excellent overview is given in Gehrke 1997. Van Effenterre 1979 has identified foreign craftsmen engaged by Cretan cities as a separate social group; for a different interpretation of the relevant sources, see Perlman 2004.

                • Bile, Monique. 1988. Le dialecte crétois ancien: Étude de la langue des inscriptions. Recueil des inscriptions postérieures aux IC. Paris: Boccard.

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                  Systematic discussion of the linguistic features of the Cretan inscriptions (7th–1st centuries BCE), which also contains discussion of the terms connected with the Cretan political and social institutions; useful as a reference work.

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                • Gehrke, Hans-Joachim. 1997. Gewalt und Gesetz: Die soziale und politische Ordnung Kretas in der Archaischen und Klassischen Zeit. Klio 79:23–68.

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                  The best short description of the main features of aristocratic society in Crete (7th–4th centuries BCE), especially on how law and social norms imposed aristocratic ideals (e.g., in education).

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                • Lavrencic, Monika. 1988. Andreion. Tyche 3:147–161.

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                  Systematic study of one of the best-known institutions of Classical and Hellenistic Crete: the “men’s houses” that organized the common meals of the Cretan citizens.

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                • Leitao, David D. 1995. The perils of Leukippos. Initiatory transvestism and male gender ideology in the ekdusia at Phaistos. Classical Antiquity 14:130–163.

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                  Based on a discussion of a myth located in Crete, Leitao discusses the coming-of-age rituals in Crete. For the archaeological evidence, which he does not consider, see Symi Viannou.

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                • Mandalake, Aikaterine. 2004. Koinonia kai oikonomia sten Krete kata ten archaike kai klasike epoche. Herakleion, Crete: Bikelaia Demotike Bibliotheke.

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                  Reliable reconstruction of the social organization of Archaic and Classical Crete; very good bibliography.

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                • Perlman, Paula. 2004. Tinker, tailor, soldier, sailor: The economies of Archaic Eleutherna, Crete. Classical Antiquity 23:95–137.

                  DOI: 10.1525/ca.2004.23.1.95Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                  Thorough overview of economic activities in Archaic Eleutherna; the author interprets the relevant sources as evidence for the existence of a market economy; this is debatable.

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                • Tzifopoulos, Ioannis Z. 1998. ‘Hemerodromoi’ and Cretan ‘dromeis’: Athletes or military personnel? The case of the Cretan Philonides. Nikephoros 11:137–170.

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                  With information concerning the Cretan runner Philonides (in the service of Alexander the Great) as his starting point, the author collects information concerning the importance of athletic training in the education of Cretan citizens.

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                • van Effenterre, Henri. 1979. Le statut comparé des travailleurs étrangers en Chypre, Crète et autres lieux a la fin de l’archaisme. In Acts of the International Archaeological Symposium: The relations between Cyprus and Crete ca. 2000–500 B.C. Edited by Tmēma Archaiotētōn Cyprus, 279–293. Nicosia, Cyprus: Department of Antiquities.

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                  Explores the social position of foreign craftsmen in 6th- and 5th-century Crete on the basis of a small group of inscriptions that regulated their obligations and privileges; a fundamental study on the history of Cretan society and its economy in the Archaic period.

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                • van Effenterre, Henri. 1982. Terminologie et formes de dépendance en Crète. In Rayonnement grec: Hommages à Charles Delvoye. Edited by Lydie Hadermann-Misguich and Georges Raepsaet, 35–44. Brussels, Belgium: Université de Bruxelles.

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                  Useful overview of the various terms that designate persons of dependent status (slaves and other unfree individuals); the meaning of these terms is still controversially discussed.

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                Economy

                Reconstructions of economic activities in this period are based primarily on the epigraphic sources and, to certain extent, archaeological material (foreign imports). These sources have been interpreted in two different ways: Chaniotis 1999 (see also Hellenistic Period: Economy) favors a model of an economy primarily oriented toward subsistence, while Perlman 2004 suggests the existence of a market-oriented economy. For a useful panorama of economic activities mentioned in inscriptions, see Brixhe and Bile 1999. Based on the information from pottery, Erickson 2005 reassesses the position of Crete in the trade routes of this period.

                • Brixhe, Claude, and Monique Bile. 1999. La circulation des biens dans les lois de Gortyne. In Des dialectes grecs aux Lois de Gortyne. Edited by Cathérine Dobias-Lalou, 75–116. Nancy and Paris: A.D.R.A.

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                  The authors examine the epigraphic material (primarily from Gortyn) to offer a useful panorama of the circulation of goods through purchase, inheritence, donation, and mortgage in Classical Crete.

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                • Chaniotis, Angelos. 1999. Milking the mountain: Economic activities on the Cretan uplands in the Classical and Hellenistic period. In From Minoan farmers to Roman traders: Sidelights on the economy of ancient Crete. Edited by Angelos Chaniotis, 181–220. Stuttgart, Germany: Steiner.

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                  Collection and analysis of the primarily textual evidence (inscriptions and literary sources) for economic activites (farming, pastoral activities, exploitation of timber, etc.) on the Cretan mountains; the author argues that until the Roman conquest these activities were not part of an economic system oriented toward exports, but served the subsistence of Cretan cities; this interpretation is controversial.

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                • Erickson, Brice. 2005. Archaeology of empire: Athens and Crete in the fifth century B.C. American Journal of Archaeology 109:619–663.

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                  Erickson interprets the information provided by Attic and other foreign pottery of the 5th century BCE found in Crete as evidence for the development of the island’s external relations and its position in Athenian trade networks and international trade routes.

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                • Perlman, Paula. 2004. Tinker, tailor, soldier, sailor: The economies of Archaic Eleutherna, Crete. Classical Antiquity 23:95–137.

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                  Thorough overview of the economic activities in Archaic Eleutherna; the author interprets the relevant sources as evidence for the existence of a market economy; this is debatable.

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                Law

                The epigraphy of Classical Crete consists almost exclusively of legal inscriptions (laws and decrees). Koerner 1993 and van Effenterre and Ruzé 1994–1995 are excellent collections of the sources, with translations and reliable commentaries. The historical background of Cretan law, in the context of Archaic Greek legislation, is thoroughly examined in Gagarin 2008 and Papakonstantinou 2008. The most important text is the Law Code of Gortyn (c. 450 BCE), commented on by Willetts 1967 from the perspective of social history; for recent discussions (with further bibliography), see Davies 1996 and Greco and Lombardo 2005; Maffi 2003 is a very useful critical review of recent research. New bibliography on this text and other legal inscriptions is annually presented in Supplementum epigraphicum graecum (see Inscriptions). For the legal vocabulary, see also Bile 1988.

                • Bile, Monique. 1988. Le dialecte crétois ancien: Étude de la langue des inscriptions. Recueil des inscriptions postérieures aux IC. Paris: Boccard.

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                  Systematic discussion of the linguistic features of the Cretan inscriptions (7th–1st centuries BCE) that also contains a discussion of the Cretan legal terms; useful as a reference work.

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                • Davies, John K. 1996. Deconstructing Gortyn: When is a code a code? In Greek law in its political setting. Edited by Lin Foxhall and Andrew D. E. Lewis, 33–56. Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press.

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                  Insightful discussion of the nature of legislation in Late Archaic and Classical Crete; Davies hypothesizes on the procedure followed for lawmaking and codification in Gortyn.

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                • Gagarin, Michael. 2008. Writing Greek law. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

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                  A very good overview of early Greek legislation, studying also in detail early Cretan law; a solid and lucid study, accessible to students.

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                • Greco, Emanuele, and Mario Lombardo, eds. 2005. La Grande Iscrizione di Gortyna: Centoventi anni dopo la scoperta. Athens, Greece: Scuola Archeologica Italiana di Atene.

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                  Collection of essays concerning various aspects of the Law Code of Gortyn; it includes a small selection of translations; good overview of the state of the art on the study of the single most important source of information for the society and economy of Classical Crete.

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                • Koerner, Reinhard. 1993. Inschriftliche Gesetzestexte der frühen griechischen Polis. Aus dem Nachlaß herausgegeben von Klaus Hallof. Cologne, Germany: Böhlau.

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                  Collection of inscriptions containing legal regulations (laws and decrees), including Cretan legal documents (7th–5th centuries BCE); the author provides very good commentaries and reliable translations; an important work of reference for Cretan law.

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                • Maffi, Adalberto. 2003. Studi recenti sul codice di Gortina. Dike 6:161–226.

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                  Very useful critical review of recent research on the Law Code of Gortyn.

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                • Papakonstantinou, Zinon. 2008. Lawmaking and adjudication in Archaic Greece. London: Duckworth.

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                  A systematic study of judicial procedures in early Greece, with a very good discussion of the Cretan material; a good introduction to the major problems of early Cretan law, accessible to students.

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                • van Effenterre, Henri, and Françoise Ruzé. 1994–1995. Nomima: Recueil d’inscriptions politiques et juridiques de l’archaïsme grec. Rome: École Française.

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                  Collection of Archaic and Early Classical inscriptions containing legal regulations (laws and decrees), including Cretan legal documents (7th–5th centuries BCE), with translations and good commentaries; an important work of reference for Cretan law.

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                • Willetts, R. F. 1967. The Law Code of Gortyn. Berlin: de Gruyter.

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                  When it appeared, this was a groundbreaking work, attempting to use Marxist theory and social anthropology in order to interpret the Law Code of Gortyn and its social institutions. Still thought-provoking, it cannot be trusted for details; Willett’s translation of the text is usually accurate.

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                Settlement

                The study of settlement in this period is less advanced than that of the Minoan period. Westgate 2007 gives an overview of household architecture.

                • Westgate, Ruth. 2007. House and society in classical and Hellenistic Crete: A case study in regional variation. American Journal of Archaeology 111:423–457.

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                  Very useful overview of household architecture from the 5th to the 1st centuries BCE and of how regional variations and changes over time reflect social organization.

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                Religion

                Favored by the existence of both textual and archaeological sources, Cretan religion in the post-Minoan period is a fascinating subject because of the possibility to study differences between the different poleis, continuities, changes, and various sociopolitical functions of cults and sactuaries (Chaniotis 2006). Sporn 2002 gives an exhaustive survey of the known cults and sanctuaries, thus largely replacing Willetts 1962, which, however, also covers earlier periods.

                • Chaniotis, Angelos. 2006. Heiligtümer überregionaler Bedeutung auf Kreta. In Kult, Politik, Ethnos: Überregionale Heiligtümer im Spannungsfeld von Kult und Politik. Edited by Klaus Freitag, Peter Funke, and Mathias Haake, 196–209. Stuttgart, Germany: Steiner.

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                  Study of the social function of extra-urban sanctuaries as meeting places of the warrior elite and stages for the performance of social rituals and rites of passage.

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                • Sporn, Katja. 2002. Heiligtümer und Kulte Kretas in klassischer und hellenistischer Zeit. Heidelberg, Germany: Verlag Archäologie und Geschichte.

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                  Thorough systematic collection of the archaeological and textual sources for sanctuaries and cult in Crete; the individual sanctuaries are discussed in detail in geographical sequence; an important work of reference for the study of religion and art in the Classical and Hellenistic periods.

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                • Willetts, Ronald F. 1962. Cretan cults and festivals. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.

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                  Collection and analysis of the literary, epigraphic, and some archaeological evidence for Cretan deities, cults, and festivals; many interpretations are speculative, and more source material has become available since the publication of this book, but it remains a useful overview.

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                Art

                Cretan art of this period has not been the subject of many systematic discussions, although much material is annually found in excavations (see Journals). For the pottery, see the pioneering work of Erickson 2000; for Knossos, see Coldstream, et al. 2001.

                Hellenistic Period (C. 336–67 BCE)

                Hellenistic Crete was dominated by wars: wars between poleis for the control of land and resources; mercenary service; and raids by pirates in the Aegean islands and along the coast of Asia Minor. The raids made Crete an important center of the slave trade. Social conflicts were caused by the increasing number of indebted individuals and citizens without land; their results were migration, mercenary service, raids, internal colonization, and wars. Bilateral treaties reveal a tendency toward military and economic cooperation. Because of the predominance of epigraphic sources, the political, social, and economic history of this period has almost monopolized scholarly interest. Only in recent years has the art history of this period (especially pottery production) attracted some interest.

                Overviews

                Van Effenterre 1948 is still the only attempt to write a systematic history of Crete in the Hellenistic period; some of his views need to be revised on the basis of more recent research. The major political and social developments have been discussed in Brulé 1978 in connection with the history of Cretan piracy, and in Chaniotis 1996 in connection with discussion of treaties. The political relations of Cretan cities with Hellenistic kingdoms and states have been studied in Kreuter 1992. An overview of developments in society and economy is offered in Petropoulou 1985. An interesting case study, the development of the city of Hierapytna, has been thoroughly studied in Guizzi 2001.

                • Brulé, Pierre. 1978. La piraterie crétoise hellénistique. Paris: Les Belles Lettres.

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                  Pioneering study of the social and economic causes of Cretan piracy, with discussion of the information concerning the raids of Cretan pirates in the Aegean.

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                • Chaniotis, Angelos. 1996. Die Verträge zwischen kretischen Poleis in der hellenistischen Zeit. Stuttgart, Germany: Steiner.

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                  Reconstruction of Cretan political, economic, and social life on the basis of treaties between Cretan cities; emphasis is placed on treaties of alliance, on clauses concerning economic cooperation, and on relations between sovereign cities and dependent communities.

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                • Guizzi, Francesco. 2001. Hierapytna: Storia di una polis cretese dalla fondazione alla conquista romana. Memorie della Accademi dei Lincei ser. 9, 13: 277–444.

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                  Because of the abundant epigraphic material (mainly treaties), Hierapytna is one of the few Cretan cities whose history can be reconstructed for the Hellenistic period; this is a thorough study of the evidence and a significant contribution to the history of Hellenistic Crete.

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                • Kreuter, Sylvia. 1992. Aussenbeziehungen kretischer Gemeinden zu den hellenistischen Staaten im 3. und 2. Jh. v. Chr. Munich: Editio Maris.

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                  Collection and discussion of the epigraphic and literary sources concerning the relations of Cretan cities with Hellenistic kings (especially the Ptolemies) and other states (especially Rhodes); useful as a collection of sources, but not innovative in its historical analysis.

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                • Petropoulou, Angeliki. 1985. Beiträge zur Wirtschafts- und Gesellschaftsgeschichte Kretas in hellenistischer Zeit. Frankfurt, Germany: Lang.

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                  Discussion of important aspects of society and economy in Hellenistic Crete, especially of mercenary service; the view of a democratization of the Cretan constitution during this period is, however, not supported by the evidence.

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                • Spyridakis, Stylianos. 1970. Ptolemaic Itanos and Hellenistic Crete. Berkeley: Univ. of California Press.

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                  Focusing on the history of the city of Itanos, which in certain periods harbored a Ptolemaic garrison, the author studies relations between the Ptolemies and Crete; still a useful study, although some of the conclusions concerning Hellenistic Crete more generally need to be revised on the basis of more recent research.

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                • van Effenterre, Henri. 1948. La Crète et le mond grec de Platon a Polybe. Paris: Boccard.

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                  Groundbreaking study of the political history, institutions, and society of Crete in the Hellenistic period; still an important reference work.

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                Society

                For important developments of Cretan society in the Hellenistic period, see Hellenistic Period: Overviews. Brulé 1990 exploits the information provided by inscriptions to investigate family structures and demography.

                • Brulé, Pierre. 1990. Enquête démographique sur la famille grecque antique: Étude de listes de politographie d’Asie mineure d’époque hellénistique (Milet et Ilion). Revue des Études Anciennes 92:233–258.

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                  Thorough study of lists of Cretan mercenaries and their families who migrated to Miletos in the late 3rd century BCE; these lists provide information on family structure and demography (size of families).

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                Economy

                Economic activities in Hellenistic Crete were primarily connected with war (mercenary service, slave trade, trade of booty). Petropoulou 1985 presents a good collection and discussion of the relevant sources. Chaniotis 1999 collects studies concerning the economy of this period. Chaniotis 1995 discusses the Hellenistic epigraphic evidence (treaties) for the seasonal movement of livestock (“transhumance”).

                • Chaniotis, Angelos. 1995. Problems of ‘pastoralism’ and ‘transhumance’ in Classical and Hellenistic Crete. Orbis Terrarum 1:39–89.

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                  The author analyzes clauses of Hellenistic treaties between Cretan cities that facilitated the movement of livestock, and associates this evidence with transhumance.

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                • Chaniotis, Angelos, ed. 1999. From Minoan farmers to Roman traders: Sidelights on the economy of ancient Crete. Stuttgart, Germany: Steiner, 1999.

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                  Several chapters in this collection of essays are dedicated to aspects of economy in Hellenistic Crete (Angelos Chaniotis, “Milking the mountain: Economic activities on the Cretan uplands in the Classical and Hellenistic period,” 181–220; Didier Viviers, “Economy and territorial dynamics in Crete from the Archaic to the Hellenistic period,” 221–233; Franzesco Guizzi, “Private economic activities in Hellenistic Crete: The evidence of the Isopoliteia treaties,” 235–245).

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                • Petropoulou, Angeliki. 1985. Beiträge zur Wirtschafts- und Gesellschaftsgeschichte Kretas in hellenistischer Zeit. Frankfurt, Germany: Lang.

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                  Discussion of important aspects of economy in Hellenistic Crete, especially mercenary service and slave trade.

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                Settlement

                Only a few settlements of the Hellenistic period have been studied systematically. Westgate 2007 gives a useful overview of household architecture.

                • Westgate, Ruth. 2007. House and society in classical and Hellenistic Crete: A case study in regional variation. American Journal of Archaeology 111:423–457.

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                  Very useful overview of household architecture from the 5th to the 1st centuries BCE and of how regional variations and changes over time reflect social organization.

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                Religion

                Thanks to the epigraphic material, religion in Hellenistic Crete is better known than that of earlier periods. For an important sanctuary of this period, that of Asklepios in Lebena, see Lebena. Sporn 2002 is a very good overview. For the political significance of extra-urban sanctuaries, see Chaniotis 2009.

                • Chaniotis, Angelos. 2009. Functions of extra-urban sanctuaries in ancient Crete. In The Aegean and its Cultures. Proceedings of the first Oxford-Athens graduate student workshop organized by the Greek Society and the University of Oxford Taylor Institution, 22–23 April 2005. Edited by Georgios Deligiannakis and Yannis Galanakis, 59–67. Oxford: Archaeopress.

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                  Study of a particular type of sanctuary in Archaic-Hellenistic Crete: extra-urban sanctuaries, which served as meeting places of the warrior elite and centers of regional networks.

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                • Sporn, Katja. 2002. Heiligtümer und Kulte Kretas in klassischer und hellenistischer Zeit. Heidelberg, Germany: Verlag Archäologie und Geschichte.

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                  Thorough systematic collection of the archaeological and textual sources for sanctuaries and cults in Crete; the individual sanctuaries are discussed in detail in geographical sequence; an important work of reference for the study of religion and art in the Classical and Hellenistic periods.

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                Art

                Artistic activity in Hellenistic Crete has not yet been systematically explored, but there are publications of material from individual sites. An important group of sculptures from Gortyn has been published in Romeo and Portale 1998. A thorough study of the Hellenistic pottery has been presented in Englezou 2005 (for Knossos, see Coldstream, et al. 2001). Allegro and Ricciardi 1999 have studied one of the few monumental projects in architecture: the fortifications of Late Hellenistic Gortyn.

                Roman Crete (67 BCE–c. 500 CE)

                The Roman conquest brought the integration of Crete into the Roman Empire, terminated the conservative sociopolitical system that had existed since the Archaic period, and promoted a new orientation of the economy. Although the numerous inscriptions and the abundant archaeological material (especially finds in recent years) permit a reliable reconstruction of most aspects of life and culture in Roman Crete, until very recently studies on this period were rare.

                Overviews

                The most comprehensive overview of Roman Crete is still the pioneering work of Sanders 1982. Harrison 1993 is more recent, but with several mistakes. Chaniotis 2008 sketches major new developments and provides extensive bibliography.

                • Baldwin Bowsky, Martha W. 2004. Of two tongues: Acculturation at Roman Knossos. In Colonie romane nel mondo greco. Edited by Giovanni Salmeri, Andrea Raggi, and Anselmo Baroni, 95–150. Rome: L’Erma di Bretschneider.

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                  Surveys of the presence of Greek and Latin inscriptions in Roman Knossos, which shows that Latin was employed in the more prestigious epigraphic genres; its use decreased in the course of the Imperial period. B. Useful for the assessment of “Romanization” in Crete.

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                • Chaniotis, Angelos. 2008. What difference did Rome make? The Cretans and the Roman Empire. In The province strikes back: Imperial dynamics in the eastern Mediterranean. Edited by Björn Forsén and Giovanni Salmeri, 83–105. Helsinki: Finnish Institute at Athens.

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                  Overview of the changes that the Roman conquest brought to Cretan society, economy, and culture; extensive bibliography updating the bibliography in Sanders 1982.

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                • Harrison, G. W. M. 1993. The Romans and Crete. Amsterdam: Hakkert.

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                  Comprehensive study of history, economy, and settlement in Roman Crete; not always reliable because the inscriptions are sometimes misinterpreted.

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                • Livadiotti, Monica, and Ilaria Simiakaki, eds. 2004. Creta romana e protobizantina: Atti del Congresso Internazionale (Iraklion, 23–30 settembre 2000). 4 vols. Padua, Italy: Bottega di Erasmo.

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                  The essays assembled in this volume present the best panorama of recent research on Roman Crete (history, settlement, art, economy); indispensable as a work of reference for this period.

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                • Sanders, Ian F. 1982. Roman Crete: An archaeological survey and gazetteer of Late Hellenistic, Roman, and Early Byzantine Crete. Warminster, UK: Aris and Phillips.

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                  Still the best study of Roman Crete (history, administration, economy, society, art); very valuable discussion of the archaeological remains in the Cretan sites.

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                Administration

                For Roman administration in Crete, see also Roman Crete: Overviews. Baldwin 1983, Pautasso 1994–1995, and Perl 1970 and Perl 1971 have collected the evidence for the Roman governors, Rouanet-Liesenfelt 1994 for the function of the provincial assembly (Koinon ton Kreton).

                • Baldwin, Martha A. 1983. Fasti Cretae et Cyrenarum: Imperial magistrates of Crete and Cyrenaica during the Julio-Claudian period. PhD, Univ. of Michigan.

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                  Collection of information concerning the provincial governors of Crete.

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                • Pałuchowski, Adam. 2005. Fastes des protocosmes des cités crétoises sous le Haut-Empire. Antiquitas 27. Wroclaw, Poland: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Wrocławskiego.

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                  Thorough study of the office of the protokosmos (president of the board of the annual magistrates) in the Cretan cities in the Imperial period; a significant contribution to political life in the cities under Roman rule.

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                • Pautasso, Antonella. 1994–1995. Anthypatoi Kretes kai Kyrenes: Osservazioni sull’attività dei proconsuli nella provincia nei primi secoli dell’Impero. Annuario della Scuola Archaeologica di Atene 72/73: 75–108.