The Aegean: Contact Point of the Ancient World
When you are in Greece you are never more than 40 miles away from the ocean
There are mountains all around and most even have ice all year round on top,
rugged mountain terrain
Allowed easy transportation, trade, fishing ( never been that great, today terrible)
Natural defense (provides a border), cultural interaction
City states grew up separately form each other and eventually caused its downfall
Cyclades Islands in the Aegean Sea (east of Greece)
We only have artifacts to know about them. They have Cycladic Artifacts
5-6 inches high, some are ½ inch high, some are life-size, they probably have to
do with the persons age and status (if you are older you have a larger one, or
wealthier, etc) There are hundreds of these in Aegean collections. They are ALL
of female figures.
most are found in tombs (the ones that were left by the ancient peoples, in
not intended to stand up
style: very abstract, very flat and linear, indicating essential aspect of this
they were originally painted (all ancient structure and architecture were
painted, but paint chipped away)
Purpose: maybe they were like serdab statues from Egypt, the soul of the
person were preserved in that.
The problem with this theory is that they were
all women. Another theory was that they were fertility figures, but they are
thin and don’t look very fertile and are placed in tombs. Some think that they
are female goddess figures, and its true that thee more dependent cultures
were on nature, the more they praised these types of figures. Another theory is
that they were guides to the underworld. (afterlife down) They thought that in
order for the person to find their way through the underworld, they needed a
guide. (homer’s odyssey has this illustration, Dante’s divine comedy) These
figures originated in the Cycladic cultures. (later Greeks did not let men
handle dead bodies, washing cleaning prep)
Sometimes you will find male figures, but they are all musicians (lyre) perhaps
indicating that mean had role in funerary rituals by accompanying women in the
process through mourning and singing.
They were not flat and linear, indicating they were more central in life). These
were made of marble.
The main earth of Greece is made of marble. All of them are of human beings,
this is the
(focus on human beings) BIG ism in the ancient world.
PEACE AND PROSPERITY: ISLANDS OF CRETE AND SANTORINI