Colin MacDonald

in The Oxford Handbook of the Bronze Age Aegean

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780199873609
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Archaeology


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  • Classical Studies
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Knossos was the main prehistoric settlement of the island of Crete and is best known for its monumental palace, the so-called Minos Palace. The earliest settlement of Knossos in the prepottery or Aceramic Neolithic may have been the earliest formal settlement in the whole of Crete. While new discoveries and a wide range of archaeological methods are helping to clarify and challenge the views of early human habitation on Crete, it is important to note that the earliest signs of human activity on the island are found precisely where the ceremonial center of Knossos, the palace, was later built. The Bronze Age palace itself was, among other things, both a monument to the ancient religious ceremonies that had taken place on this spot and an expression of the new authority that was in place, initially at the Knossian level and later at a regional and perhaps even an island-wide level.

Keywords: Knossos; Crete; Minos Palace; human; habitation; Bronze Age

Article.  5887 words. 

Subjects: Classical Studies ; Ancient Greek History ; Greek and Roman Archaeology

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