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The Early Aegean Age
Guide: Minoans

Scholars of ancient history have long been fascinated by the Minoans, a civilization that flourished on the Mediterranean island of Crete during the Bronze Age. This collection of resources explores the customs and culture of ancient Minoan civilization, as well as the different theories that have been presented to explain its decline. Use the Export to My Lists button above to turn this into a research list for your students.

Time Period Key Understandings

  • Geography impacts a civilization's ability to communicate and unify
  • Centralization allows for culture to flourish and disseminate
  • Oral history and tradition perpetuate cultural norms and religion
  • Societal celebrations and norms can glorify and support warfare
  • Political structure influences the economic stratification of a society
  • Democratic systems value the rights and opinions of citizens
  • Internal rivalry leads to competitive rather than collaborative systems
  • Art and architecture depict society's values and histories
  • Philosophy, or the love of wisdom, contributes to the betterment of society through academic research, reasoning, and discovery
  • Strong leadership leads to success of political and military campaigns
  • Cultural diffusion can lead to romanticism of past civilizations and culture

Key Questions

  • How did the geography of Crete influence the development of Minoan culture? In what way was Minoan civilization well-situated for participation in trade?
  • What kinds of clues about Minoan society can be found in the civilization's art and architecture?
  • Why is it significant that the Cretan hieroglyphic and Linear B writing systems remain undeciphered? What kinds of information about an ancient society can be found in writing and not necessarily in other sources?
  • Why do you think the cause of Minoan civilization's fall remains uncertain?


  1. Overview: Minoans
  2. Visuals: Minoans (Visual)
  3. Outlines: Outline
  4. Transcripts: Transcript
  5. Lesson: Introduction
  6. Lesson: 1-Minoan Civilization
  7. Lesson: 2-Minoan Palace Culture, Art, and Writing
  8. Lesson: 3-End of Minoan Civilization
  9. Lesson: Closing
  10. Photos & Illustrations: Crete: partridge fresco from palace at Knossos
  11. Photos & Illustrations: Minoan women fresco
  12. Photos & Illustrations: Minoan: bull leaping fresco from Knossos
  13. Photos & Illustrations: Minoan: fresco of boxing children
  14. Reference Articles: Minoans
  15. Reference Articles: Crete
  16. Reference Articles: Knossos

MLA Citation

"Minoans." History Hub, ABC-CLIO, 2020, historyhub.abc-clio.com/Support/Content/2158309?cid=256. Accessed 21 Jan. 2020.

Entry ID: 2158309

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