The Mycenaean civilization flourished in the late Bronze Age, from the 15th to the 13th century BCE and extended its influence not only throughout the Peloponnese in Greece but also across the Aegean. in particular, on Crete and the Cycladic islands.The Mycenaeans were influenced by the earlier Minoan civilization (2000-1450 BCE) which had spread from its origins at Knossos. Crete to include the wider Aegean. Architecture, art and religious practices were assimilated and adapted to better express the perhaps more militaristic and austere Mycenaean culture.Major Mycenaean Centres
Major Mycenaean centres included Mycenae (traditional home of Agamemnon ), Tiryns (perhaps the oldest centre), Pylos (traditional home of Nestor), Thebes. Midea, Gla, Orchomenos, Argos. Sparta. Nichoria and probably Athens. Beyond trading relations, the exact political relationship between these centres is not clear. However, there were many shared cultural features such as architecture, frescoes, pottery. jewellery, weaponry, and of course, the Greek language and writing in the form of Linear B (an adaptation of the Minoan Linear A).Advertisement
The Mycenaean Megaron was the precursor for THE later Archaic and Classical temples of the Greek world.Mycenaean Architecture
A large palace complex has been found at most of the Mycenaean centres. These complexes, whilst displaying some site-unique developments, also display important architectural features in common. The complexes were built around a large rectangular central hall or Megaron. The Mycenaean Megaron was the precursor for the later Archaic and Classical temples of the Greek world and consisted of an entrance porch, a vestibule and the hall itself. This was the heart of the palace and contained a large circular hearth (usually more than 3m in diameter) with four wooden columns supporting a holed ceiling or light-well. It was also the throne room of the ruler or wannax. There is usually a second, smaller hall (Queen’s Megaron ), many private apartments and areas set aside for administration, storage and manufacturing. Rooms were richly decorated with fresco paintings on the walls and plaster painted floors. Regarding materials, rooms in the palace were constructed with rubble fill and cross-beamed walls covered in plaster inside and limestone blocks outside. Columns and ceilings were usually of painted wood, sometimes with bronze additions.
The whole palace complex was surrounded by a fortification wall of large unworked blocks (termed Cyclopean as it was believed that only the Cyclopes could have moved such massive stones). Such walls could reach 13m in height and be as much as 8m thick. Corbel galleries - arched corridors created by progressively overlapping stone blocks, circular stone tombs with corbelled roofs, and monumental doorways with massive stone lintels with relieving triangles are also common features of Mycenaean sites. Other Mycenaean architectural structures include damns for flood management, particularly at Tiryns, and bridges built from large roughly-hewn stone blocks.
That the Mycenaean civilization had trading contact with other Aegean cultures is evidenced by the presence of foreign goods in Mycenaean settlements such as gold. ivory, copper and glass and by the discovery of Mycenaean goods such as pottery in places as far afield as Egypt. Mesopotamia. the Levant. Anatolia. Sicily and Cyprus. No doubt perishable goods such as oil and wine were also significant Mycenaean exports.Advertisement Mycenaean Art
In art as expressed in fresco, pottery and jewellery, the Minoan love of natural forms and flowing design was likewise adopted by the Mycenaean artisans but with a tendency to more schematic and less life-like representation. This new style would become the dominant one throughout the Mediterranean. Geometric designs were popular, as were decorative motifs such as spirals and rosettes. Pottery shapes are much like the Minoan with the notable additions of the goblet and the alabastron (squat jar) with a definite preference for large jars. Terracotta figurines of animals and especially standing female figures were popular, as were small sculptures in ivory, carved stone vessels and intricate gold jewellery. Frescoes depicted plants, griffins, lions, bull-leaping, battle scenes, warriors, chariots, figure-of-eight shields and boar hunts, a particularly popular Mycenaean activity.
Little is known for certain regarding Mycenaean religious practices beyond the importance given to animal sacrifice, communal feasting, pouring of libations and offerings of foodstuffs. The presence of double axe carvings and horns of consecration in art and architecture suggest strong links with the Minoan religion, although these symbols may have been adopted because of their political resonance. Architectural features such as sunken basins and fresco depictions of altars hint that the Megaron may have had a religious function. Many centres also had specific sanctuary sites for worship, usually close to the palace complex. It is clear that burial was an important ritual as evidenced by the presence of monumental tholos tombs, prominent grave sites and the quantity of precious objects which were buried with the dead - golden masks, diadems, jewellery and ceremonial swords and daggers.
With the mysterious end of the Mycenaean civilization during the Bronze Age Collapse around 1200 BCE (possibly through earthquake, invasion or in-fighting) came the so-called Dark Ages and it would be many centuries before Greek culture would finally regain the heights of the late Bronze Age.Advertisement About the Author
Agamemnon was the King of Mycenae and leader of the Greek army in the Trojan War of Homer’s Iliad. He is presented as a great warrior but selfish ruler, famously upsetting his invincible champion Achilles and so prolonging the war and suffering of his men. A hero from Greek mythology, there are no historical records of a Mycenaean king of that name. [continue reading ]
Argos lies on the fertile Argolid plain in the eastern Peloponnese in Greece. The site has been inhabited from prehistoric times up to the present day. Ancient Argos was built on two hills: Aspis and Larissa, 80 m and 289 m in height respectively. Argos, along with Mycenae and Tiryns, was a significant Mycenaean centre, and the city remained important throughout. [continue reading ]
by Cristian Violatti
published on 26 January 2015
Linear B Script was the writing system used by the Mycenaean civilization. Examples of this script have been recovered from late Minoan II contexts in Crete and Mycenaean IIIA-B contexts in mainland Greece, which suggest that the script was in use between c. 1450 and c. 1100 BCE. The use of Linear B Script was restricted to major palace sites such. [continue reading ]
by Mark Cartwright
published on 02 September 2009
Mycenae was a fortified late Bronze Age city located between two hills on the Argolid plain of the Peloponnese, Greece. The acropolis today dates from between the 14th and 13th century BCE when the Mycenaean civilization was at its peak of power, influence and artistic expression. In Mythology In Greek mythology the city was founded by Perseus. [continue reading ]
Southern Utah University
Two gold cups were found in a tholos at Vapheio, the region near Sparta in what is today southern Greece. The tholos is believed to be that of a king. These cups are believed by many to be of differing origins, one Minoan and one Mycenaean. However, the cultures are so similar, and the artifacts so alike, that one can be inclined to believe that there is no true difference.
The gold cup on the left in the text is arguably Minoan. This cup depicts a man tying a bull. This appears to be in preparation for sport. The Minoans believed the bull to be sacred, and it seems that bulls were used in many rituals. In addition to the man and the bull, the cup shows trees, earth and clouds. These are all depicted rather naturalistically. They are not quite as big as they would be in nature, and this only adds to the centrality of the bull. The lines are curving and contoured, reminiscent of the Toreador Fresco, which also depicts a bull ritual as its main focus.
On the right, however, is a Mycenaean cup. The portrayed images appear to be Minoan. The images on this cup are obviously contoured, almost the same as the Minoan cup. However, the author argues that the execution in Mycenaean. Rather than expressing the natural setting of the bull (the landscape forms surrounding it) as the Minoan cup, the Mycenaean cup focuses more on the struggle of the captive bull. Indeed, as one looks at the cup on the left, the bull is the largest feature.
Despite some slight differences, it is arguable that there really isn’t too much that is different about these two cups. The one on the right is cruder, but the iconography is the same as Minoan. It would appear that the Minoans had a large amount of influence on the art of the area of ancient Greece. Discoveries at Thera bear striking resemblance to Minoan art as well. While lacking in naturalistic detail (as Egyptian art does as well) the contours of the figures are very similar. Perhaps the Mycenaeans borrowed from the Minoan and Theran traditions. The “Goddess” fresco certainly seems to support this theory.
In conclusion, while the two cups have slightly differing styles, it seems like too much is being made of differing styles. It seems that essentially Minoan and Mycenaean art is the same. The two cups were created the same way: by hammering from the inside and the smoothing the edges. In addition, both have the same iconography. The lack of landscape forms on the one cup hardly seems justification enough to call them two different art forms from two different civilizations.
Laurie Schneider Adams, A History of Western Art (New York, N.Y. McGraw-Hill, 2001).Others are Reading
Both the Minoan and Mycenaean cultures were early Greek cultures, spanning several centuries before Christ. Much is not known regarding these people, but archeologists have been able to determine some information from their findings. It is the purpose of this paper to compare and contrast and Minoan and Mycenaean cultures.
These two early cultures were situated very near each other geographically, on the Mediterranean, and they shared similarities of climate. Because of the mixing of the two cultures, at least during parts of their history, their arts and cultures blended, and both of the cultures generated wealth, at least for some of the people. Both of the cultures developed a writing system, although the degree of sophistication of the system differed somewhat. Enormous quantities of Mycenaean and Minoan pottery have been found throughout the Eastern Mediterranean, and the artistic designs on the pottery is one way of learning about these early civilizations (Feldman 4).
Both of the cultures had a royal class, and both cultures developed sophisticated architecture, one of the principal ways of expending their wealth (Graham 9). Not a lot is known about the religions of the Minoans and Mycenaean cultures, except from the images left on their art. Greek mythology as we know it today came from the Mycenaean culture, but material evidence does not reveal very much about the spiritual lives of the Minoans (Graham 18). Both of the cultures developed beautiful art, costumes, buildings, indoor plumbing, and beautiful architecture, the remains of which tell the stories of these early cultures and their lives. Both cultures developed expertise in pottery, although the topics and images depicted varied between the two cultures.
The Minoans and Mycenaean cultures had a stratified society, although more is known about the upper classes, as they expended their wealth on buildings and tombs and left written records about their a.More on Minoan and Mycenaean Cultures.
Minoan and Mycenaean Cultures. (1969, December 31). In LotsofEssays.com. Retrieved 00:20, February 24, 2017, from http://www.lotsofessays.com/viewpaper/1694677.html
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During the Second and Third millennia BC, Aegean civilizations include three related yet diverse cultures. These cultures include the Minoan culture located on the island of Crete, the Cycladic culture located on the Cyclades Islands north of Crete, and the Mycenaean culture located on the mainland of Greece. Although there were many differences, there were many mutual traditions and styles (Janson 92).
Not much is known about the Cycladic civilization except what has been learned from the art they left behind. Around 2800 BC, Cycladic female nudes made of marble are described as "Generally they have a flat, wedge-shaped body; a strong columnar neck; a tilted oval shield of a face; and a long ridge like nose" (Janson 93). The Cycladic sculptors then embraced a new style. The newer sculptures were of nude female figures that lacked the full figure appearance and instead portrayed narrow hips and petite breasts.
This change is believed to be related to a change in religious beliefs (Janson 94).
The Minoan civilization was the most prosperous and extraordinary. There are many stages of their civilization that materialize then vanish suddenly. The theory behind these sudden changes is archaeological disasters and historical forces (Janson 94). The Minoan people were undeterred by these disasters. When earthquakes destroyed the Minoan palaces, which occurred at least three times, the Minoans rebuilt them, each more impressive then the previous palace. One of the more remarkable palaces was the Knossos. The Knossos was covered with beautiful wall paintings of images of nature, showing the Minoans love of nature.
The Minoans were a peaceful people. They had no need for walls or fortresses since their island location provided them with a view of all their surroundings, enabling them to see attackers well in advance.
Minoan statues were very impressive in.Citation styles:
Aegean Civilization - Describes the similiarities and differences of the Minoan, Cycladic, and Mycenaean cultures, including specific works of art. (2003, October 01). In WriteWork.com. Retrieved 05:20, February 24, 2017, from http://www.writework.com/essay/aegean-civilization-describes-similiarities-and-difference
WriteWork contributors. "Aegean Civilization - Describes the similiarities and differences of the Minoan, Cycladic, and Mycenaean cultures, including specific works of art." WriteWork.com. WriteWork.com, 01 October, 2003. Web. 24 Feb. 2017.
WriteWork contributors, "Aegean Civilization - Describes the similiarities and differences of the Minoan, Cycladic, and Mycenaean cultures, including specific works of art.," WriteWork.com, http://www.writework.com/essay/aegean-civilization-describes-similiarities-and-difference (accessed February 24, 2017)More Art Essays essays:
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Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 24 April 2016Minoan and Mycenae Civilization Comparison Essay
During the civilizations of Minoan Crete and Mycenae of mainland Greece, many changes impacted Minoan civilization in which some cultural legacies of the Minoans survived after the Mycenean takeover of the Minoans. Both Minoan and Mycenean civilizations share some differences and similarities, which shaped their cultural legacies. Many factors, such as technology, trade, geography, art, military, government, and society, changed or continued with each civilization. For example, the Minoans built a strong navy in which they interacted with other ancient civilizations, such as Mesopotamia and Egypt, without being intimidated. This allowed Minoans to be exposed to other cultures through trade and imports, which influenced their own culture. As a result, Minoans were the forerunner of Greek civilization and considered the first European civilization. While the Minoans used their navy for protection, the Myceneans used their military for expand their empire. Ultimately, Myceneans took over the Minoans. Trade appeared to be more crucial to the Minoans while the military was critical to the Myceneans.
There was a fusion of cultures between the Minoan culture with Helladic culture of mainland Greece, which evolved into Mycenaean civilization. They shared similarities and differences such as geography technology, trade, art, military, government, and society. After the ruins of both civilizations were studied, the influence of both cultures on each other is evident in which their cultural legacies changed or survived. First, one difference of the Minoans and Myceneans was the geographical location regarding different terrain and surroundings. For example, Minoans were located on an island called Crete which was surrounded by water. The climate was great for agriculture with mild winters and warm summers. In addition, the land was fertile, which produced food for the people and for export. As a result of Crete’s abundance of materials, the Minoans where able to trade many objects and natural resources with other countries such as, Egypt and the Middle East. The Minoans traded with neighboring civilizations by boat.
In contrast, Mycenae was located on the main land of Greece. Instead of trading, Myceneans concentrated on warfare. Second, one similarity between both civilizations was their military. Both relied on their military, but differed on the way the military was utilized. Third, the Minoans built a strong navy, but did not use excessive force. The Minoans used their military for protection in which they could interact with others, such as Egypt and Mesopotamia, without fear of war. In contrast, the Mycenaeans used excessive force to expand their civilization. For example, they took over the Minoans during the peak of their civilization. Their societies differed in principles, in which the Mycenaean’s society was influenced by military advancements, and the Minoans society was affected by technology, art, and trade. Fourth, the Mycenean cities were heavy fortresses while Minoans were surrounded with art of everyday life. Both appreciated art. Minoan art included pottery and art of everyday life while Mycenean art focused on hunting and war.
They also had different views on government. Fifth, another difference between Minoan and Mycenean civilization focused on the government and society. The Mycenean society was monarchial. The monarch ruled the administration as a head bureaucrat. The Myceneans were ruled by a king who accumulated wealth and power. Their king was a warlord who focused on battle and invasion. In contrast to the monoarchy, archaeological evidence demonstrated a decentralized culture without powerful warlords or centralized authority in the Minoan. In addition, the wealth was shared with the rest of society compared to the king of the Myceneans, who became wealthy. Initially, the Minoans did not have a hierarchy, which was evidenced by tombs without hierarchal structure. Later, the Minoans established an authority focused on a king while developing a bureaucracy. A social hierarchy separated people into nobles, peasants, and slaves.
Sixth, at the height of Minoan civilization, women played a powerful role in society, which was not noted among the Mycenean civilization. Today, women are gaining more opportunity and obtaining powerful roles in society. Seventh, there was an interruption of Minoan civilization in which it was debated that this was invasion of Mycenean civilization or natural disaster, such as the Thera volcano eruption or tsunami. The evidence of Mycenean cultural influence on Minoan art and trade is a strong indication. The Minoans were a mercantilist people involved in trade, but their culture after 1700 BC demonstrated organization without military aristocracy that was shown later. In fact, large number of weapons were found in the Minoan royal tombs, which may indicate the Mycenean influence. Societies throughout the world have continued the principles of both ancient societies Both ancient civilizations share similarities and difference in the importance of trade, military, art, technology, government, and society.
In conclusion, many changes impacted Minoan civilization after the Mycenean takeover of the Minoans in which some cultural legacies of the Minoans survived. The Minoan and Mycenean civilizations shared differences and similarities that have influenced their cultural legacies. Many factors, such as technology, trade, geography, art, military, government, and society, changed or continued with each civilization. While the land where the Minoans lived is deforested compared to the abundance of natural resources that existed in ancient times, a culture evolved that has been the foundation the first European civilization that has been changed, destroyed. and survived. It has a legacy that has contributed to the world and its local region through trade, military, art, technology, government, and society.
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