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CLAS1000 Midterm: Midterm Notes

Classical Studies
Course Code
CLAS 1000
John Walsh
Study Guide

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Test #1 Notes:
Bronze Age Greece: Minoans and Mycenaeans
civilization emerged around 2000 BC, and lasted until 1400 BC. It was located on
the island of Crete, which is now a part of Greece
written Minoan script “linear A” then later “Linear B”
Palace at Knossos:
oNo defensive walls
oControlled and defended themselves with the control of the sea
Received their name after a legendary mythical name of Minos (Arthur Evans
named them the Minoans)
Minos  the first tyrant ruler of Crete, son of Zeus
Minoan power is represented by Minoan hegemony and the king
Minoans were famous for the magnificent palaces they built, above all at Knossos. They
also made a significant contribution to the development of Western European civilization
as it is known today.
Europa: “beautiful face”:
Abducted by Zeus from Phoenicia
Zeus took the role of a white bull, abducted Europa and took her into the sea and
swims from the East side of the Mediterranean to the island of Crete

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Minos and Poseidon:
Minos makes a deal with the sea god, Poseidon, that if he makes Minos king of the
island, he will give him a reward. Minos must sacrifice his great white bull in order to
become king. He sacrifices a bull of less importance, for this, Poseidon decides to punish
Minos. He has to watch as his wife falls in love with the bull but the bull isn’t interested
because she is human and not bull. She went to a man named Daedalus who provided her
with a fake bull that she could put herself into, to seduce the bull. They make a child
called Asterius (birth name), minotaur (half bull, half man).
This rejection of the covenant with Poseidon is a mortal arrogance of divine law
called hybris
Hubris = excessive arrogance
The Child is looked at as a monster because it represents a villain
This shows the Greek’s look at ugliness shows evil inside them
elaborate structure designed and built by the legendary artificer Daedalus for King
Minos of Crete at Knossos. Its function was to hold the Minotaur eventually killed
by the hero Theseus
Minos had a son Androgeus who won the athletics
When he won, the Athenians were forced to send slaves every 7 years to Crete to
be sacrificed to the Minotaur, however in the story it was virgins

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Theseus and Minotaur:
1582 BC: Theseus travels to Crete and kills the Minotaur
The minotaur, representing the early Bronze Age’s power of Minoans, and
Theseus represents the rise of the Athenian power
Arthur Evans:
found strange images of bulls interacting with people
everywhere he went he found bull imagery that proved the story of Theseus and
Minotaur were true
famous for finding the palace of Knossos on the Greek island of Crete and for developing
the concept of Minoan civilization from the structures and artifacts found there and
elsewhere. Evans was the first to define Cretan scripts Linear A and Linear B, as well as
an earlier pictographic writing
1650 BC – 1200 BC
Mycenaeans were fierce warriors and great engineers who designed and built
remarkable bridges, fortification walls, and tombs
Deceased were usually buried in simple fashion and laid on the floor of a tomb
By the fifteenth century BC, they came in control of the Cretan palaces
The Lions Gate, to easily defend:
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