Ancient and Medieval History Notes part 4

Ancient and Medieval History Notes part 4 - Ancient and...

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Ancient and Medieval History Notes part 4 Greeks: The true origins of western culture are the Greek culture. They were conservative, but they were able to make changes. The Greeks established a political structure/ tradition. It stayed and lived on where the religious structure changed. (This is a new concept. Usually, when the religion fell, the whole country and political power did as well.) They are the source of politics, art, western culture, philosophy, science, and MANY other things. The Greeks strived for excellence in every area from art to athletics to EVERYTHING. Every civilization that comes after them compares themselves to the Greeks (including now). Understanding: (Greeks are on the line) (We understand them) The geography of their empire is important. Greece and LA are about the same time. It is also rocky, dry, and a peninsula. If you are a farmer in Greece, you have to farm along the coast. The cities were far apart. There is no ease of communication. No navigable rivers. The cities, therefore, the city-states became independent. They LOVE their independence. They won’t even join in alliances.
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The size of each state is small b/c of the geography. Each state is a guinea pig in politics. They did everything slightly differently. They were in a state of constant warfare. Thin top soil. No large scale rivers. Little rain. They turned to the sea and became the greatest sea farers. Crete was the first civilization in Europe. They were the Minoan. They had everything civilizations before had. They were discovered by Arthur Evans. Cnossos was an important discovery by Evans. He found a huge palace complex. Minoan is from the King Minos, a famous king. The legend of the Minotaur showed how strong Crete was compared to Greece at the time. Bull-jumping- an athletic/ religious commemoration, showing how revered bulls were, leading to the fact that bulls must have been revered. They had engineering prowess. There were no fortifications around Cnossos. They protected themselves with a HUGE navy. It was the largest of the time and area. They controlled the Mediterranean for centuries with it. They are influenced by those they trade with. You see artistic ideas from other civilizations of the time. It collapsed about 1450 BC. No one knows how they collapsed. They collapsed really quickly.
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There is a huge debate why. The most likely reason was there was a series of earthquakes followed by invasion. Some think that the Minoans that fled from Crete were the Philistines from the Hebrew Bible. It is possible. No one can read Linear A, the Minoan’s script. The invaders of Crete were the Mycenaean Greeks. The high point of this culture lasted 200 years.
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