CLA230 Lecture 5 Notes

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2 Feb 2013
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CLA230 Lecture 5 Notes
System Collapse
- palaces are destroyed
- around 13th century B.C., early 12th century B.C.
- unclear why – fire destruction in Mycenae, Mediterranean, etc.
- in Tiryns, fire destruction was accompanied by earthquake – perhaps in
Mycenae as well
- fire destructions are also the reason for the preservation of some linear B
tablets – firing of clay tablets
- reasons for fire destruction – accidental, earthquake, perhaps human
intervention – unsure
- some explanations – internal and external
- internal
social unrest
infighting etc. – Greek mythology
extended drought
systems collapse
- external
sea peoples
invasion from the north
cessation of international trade
- myth – “Heroic Age” could be Greek Bronze Age – they destroy each other
- sea peoples
known from Egyptian propaganda
Ramses III “brags” that he drove some out of his territory
perhaps well-organized raiders that swept across Mycenaean Greece,
destroying as they went
unclear how effective they truly were – much of it may be Egyptian
propaganda – sea peoples’ ability may have been exaggerated
- old explanation – Dorian invasion
Dorians came out of Northern Greece and took over
return of the descendants of Herakles, the Dorians
take back what was theirs
Sparta was part of Dorian Greece – the Dorian invasion justifies their
rule of the Peloponnese
all later propaganda perhaps and not actually a historical fact
- shock to eastern Mediterranean system – deterioration of Greece because of
reliance on international trade
- unclear what actually happened – likely a combination of events
- internal vs. external stimuli – to formulate theory of collapse
- event vs. process – is it an event, such as the burn of the palaces and
systemic destruction, or is it a slow descent and the destruction of palaces
being the most important factor, converging at 1200 B.C.
- one event or multiple events over time?
- many Mycenaean palaces that appear to be separately controlled – one
underlying cause for palaces, or all different causes for the destruction of
each – results are not all the same
- at Pylos – extreme depopulation after palatial destruction – more or less
abandoned
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