Peaceful Minoan Crete . . . Was Not

Boy boxers smack each other in a Minoan fresco. (Wiki Commons).

Bronze Age (Minoan) Crete is often portrayed as this peaceful place where people gathered flowers, danced, sang, and worshiped the Great Mother Goddess.

Um, no, says an archaeologist from the University of Sheffield:

“Their world was uncovered just over a century ago, and was deemed to be a largely peaceful society,” explained [Barry] Molloy. “In time, many took this to be a paradigm of a society that was devoid of war, where warriors and violence were shunned and played no significant role.

“That utopian view has not survived into modern scholarship, but it remains in the background unchallenged and still crops up in modern texts and popular culture with surprising frequency.

“Having worked on excavation and other projects in Crete for many years, it triggered my curiosity about how such a complex society, controlling resources and trading with mighty powers like Egypt, could evolve in an egalitarian or cooperative context. Can we really be that positive about human nature? As I looked for evidence for violence, warriors or war, it quickly became obvious that it could be found in a surprisingly wide range of places.”

Much like other people, in other words. Read the rest here.