The Hittites

The Hittites were an ancient Anatolian human being of the copper Age, who manufactured advanced iron goods, ruled through government officials v independent authority over assorted branches that government, and also worshipped storm gods.

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Key Takeaways

Key PointsThe Hittite realm was developed at Hattusa in north-central Anatolia about 1600 BCE, and reached that is height during the mid-14th century BCE under Suppiluliuma I.After c. 1180 BCE, the empire concerned an end during the Bronze age collapse and also splintered into several elevation “Neo-Hittite” city-states, several of which made it through until the 8 hours century BCE.The Hittite language to be a member of the Anatolian branch the the Indo-European language family.The Hittite army made successful use of chariots and progressed iron functioning technologies.After 1180 BCE, amid general turmoil in the Levant associated with the suddenly arrival that the Sea Peoples, the kingdom broke down into several independent “Neo-Hittite” city-states.The head of the Hittite state was the king, however other officials worked out independent government over miscellaneous branches that the government.Storm gods featured prominently in the Hittite religion, i beg your pardon was greatly influenced by Hattic, Mesopotamian, and also Hurrian religions.Key TermsHittite Empire: an old Anatolian human being who established an empire at Hattusa in north-central Anatolia around 1600 BCE. It got to its height during the mid-14th century BCE.Indo-European language: A member the a family of several hundred connected languages and dialects that includes most significant current languages of Europe, the Iranian plateau, the Indian subcontinent, and ancient Anatolia.cuneiform: Wedge-shaped personalities used in ancient Mesopotamian writings, frequently on clay tablets.Tarhunt: The Hurrian god that sky and also storm who oversaw Hittite conflicts with international powers.

The Hittites were an old Anatolian world who established realm at Hattusa in north-central Anatolia approximately 1600 BCE. The Hittite realm reached the height during the mid-14th century BCE under Suppiluliuma I, as soon as it incorporated an area that included most the Asia Minor and parts that the northern Levant and also Upper Mesopotamia. After c. 1180 BCE, the empire came to an end during the Bronze period collapse, and also splintered right into several independent “Neo-Hittite” city-states, few of which survived until the 8th century BCE.

The Hittite realm at that is greatest degree under Suppiluliuma ns (c. 1350–1322 BCE) and Mursili II (c. 1321–1295 BCE): The approximate level of the preferably area of the Hittite dominance (light green) and also the Hittite rule c. 1350-1300 BCE (green line).

The Hittite language to be a member of the Anatolian branch the the Indo-European language family. They referred to their indigenous land together Hatti. The conventional name “Hittites” is due to their early identification through the Biblical Hittites, follow to 19th century archaeology. The Hebrew bible refers come “Hittites” in number of passages, and links them to an eponymous ancestor Heth, a descendant the Ham through his child Canaan. The Hittites are thereby counted among the Canaanites. The Hittites room usually depicted as a world living among the Israelites—Abraham purchase the Patriarchal burial-plot native “Ephron HaChiti” (Ephron the Hittite), and also Hittites offer as high army officers in David’s army. In 2 kings 7:6, castle are shown as a civilization with their own kingdoms.

Despite the use of Hatti together the main point of your territory, the Hittites should be identified from the Hattians, one earlier people who populated the same an ar (until the beginning of the 2nd millennium BCE), and spoke a various language, maybe in the Northwest Caucasian language team known together Hattic.

The Hittite army made effective use of chariots. Back their human being thrived throughout the bronze Age, the Hittites to be the forerunners that the stole Age and also were production iron artefacts from as early as the 14th century BCE. Correspondence with rulers indigenous other realms reveal a foreign need for steel goods.

After 1180 BCE, amid basic turmoil in the Levant associated with the suddenly arrival that the Sea Peoples, the kingdom degenerated into numerous independent “Neo-Hittite” city-states. The history of the Hittite people is well-known mostly from cuneiform texts found in the area of their kingdom, and from diplomatic and also commercial correspondence uncovered in various archives in Egypt and the middle East.



The head that the Hittite state to be the king, followed by the heir-apparent. However, part officials worked out independent government over assorted branches the the government. One of the most essential of these short articles was that of the festival Mesedi (Chief of the imperial Bodyguards). It to be superseded by the rank of the gal Gestin (Chief the the wine Stewards), who, like the gal Mesedi, was normally a member of the imperial family. The kingdom’s bureaucracy was headed by the festival Dubsar (Chief of the Scribes).


Hittite religion and mythology were heavily influenced by your Hattic, Mesopotamian, and also Hurrian counterparts. In previously times, Indo-European facets may still be clearly discerned.

“Storm gods” were significant in the Hittite pantheon. Tarhunt was described as “The Conqueror,” “The King that Kummiya,” “King the Heaven,” and “Lord of the soil of Hatti.” as the god the battle and also victory, especially against foreign powers, he to be chief amongst the gods and also was illustrated as a bearded guy astride two mountains and also bearing a club.

The Phoenicians

Known for their alphabet, the Phoenicians were an old Semitic maritime trading culture in the Mediterranean. They fell under both Persian and also Hellenistic rule.

Key Takeaways

Key PointsPhoenicia was an ancient Semitic marine trading culture situated top top the western, seaside part the the productive Crescent and centered ~ above the coast of modern-day Lebanon and also Tartus Governorate in Syria from 1550 come 300 BCE.The Phoenicians supplied the galley, a man-powered cruising vessel, and also are attributed with the invention of the bireme.Each Phoenician city-state was a politics independent unit. City-states often came into dispute with rather of that kind, or created leagues and alliances.A organization of elevation city-state ports, with others top top the islands and along other coasts of the Mediterranean Sea, was ideally suited for trade between the Levant area (which was affluent in herbal resources) and also the rest of the old world.Cyrus the great of Persia dominated Phoenicia in 539 BCE, and divided Phoenicia into 4 vassal kingdoms: Sidon, Tyre, Arwad, and also Byblos.Alexander the good conquered Phoenicia start with tyre in 332 BCE. The climb of Hellenistic Greece progressively ousted the remnants the Phoenicia’s former supremacy over the eastern Mediterranean profession routes.Key Termscity-state: An independent or autonomous entity, not administered together a component of another local government, whose territory consists of a city and also possibly its surrounding territory.Phoenicia: an old Semitic maritime trading society situated ~ above the western, seaside part that the abundant Crescent.bireme: an ancient oared warship (galley) with two decks of oars, probably developed by the Phoenicians.Alexander the Great: likewise known as Alexander III of Macedon. His armed forces was incredibly successful, and also he created one that the largest empires in history.Cyrus the Great: also known as Cyrus II of Persia, Cyrus the Elder. Founder the the Achaemenid Empire.

Phoenicia was an ancient Semitic world situated on the western, seaside part of the fertile Crescent near modern-day Lebanon, Israel, Jordan, Palestine, and Syria. All significant Phoenician urban were on the coast of the Mediterranean. It was an enterprising maritime trading culture that spread throughout the Mediterranean from 1550 BCE to 300 BCE. The Phoenicians offered the galley, a man-powered cruising vessel, and are attributed with the invention of the bireme oared ship. They were famed in timeless Greece and also Rome together “traders in purple,” which refers to their syndicate on the priceless purple dye the the Murex snail, provided for imperial clothing, among other things.

Assyrian Warship: Assyrian warship (probably built by Phoenicians) through two rows the oars, relief native Nineveh, c. 700 BCE.

Phoenician became one that the most widely supplied writing systems. That was spread by Phoenician merchants throughout the Mediterranean world, wherein it evolved and also was fairy tales by countless other cultures. The Aramaic alphabet, a modified type of Phoenician, to be the ancestor of contemporary Arabic script, while Hebrew manuscript is a stylistic different of the Aramaic script. The Greek alphabet (and by extension its descendants, such together the Latin, the Cyrillic, and also the Coptic) was a direct successor of Phoenician, though certain letter worths were readjusted to stand for vowels.

Phoenicians are widely assumed to have actually originated from the previously Canaanite citizens of the region. Return Egyptian seafaring expeditions had currently been made come Byblos to bring back “cedars the Lebanon” as early as the 3rd millennium BCE, continuous contact only developed in the Egyptian brand-new Empire period.

It is important to keep in mind that Phoenicia is a classical Greek term provided to describe the region of the major Canaanite harbor towns, and does not correspond precisely to a cultural identity the would have been known by the Phoenicians themselves. The is uncertain to what level the Phoenicians viewed themselves together a solitary ethnicity and also nationality. Their human being was organized in city-states, similar to the of old Greece. However, in terms of archaeology, language, life style and religion, there is small to collection the Phoenicians apart together markedly different from other Semitic societies of Canaan. As Canaanites, lock were distinctive in their remarkable seafaring achievements.

Each Phoenician city-state was a politically independent unit. City-states regularly came into conflict with one another, with the an outcome that one may conquer another. City-states were likewise inclined to collaborate in leagues and alliances. Though old boundaries the city-centered cultures fluctuated, the city of Tyre organized the southernmost border of Phoenician territory.


Phoenician Sarcophagus: A Phoenician sarcophagus at the funeral grounds that Antarados, northern Lebanon, 480-450 BCE. Do from Greek marble.

Rise and also Decline

The high allude of Phoenician culture and sea power is usually placed c. 1200-800 BCE, though many of the most crucial Phoenician settlements had been created long prior to this period. Archeology has actually identified cultural elements the the Phoenician zenith as early on as the third millennium BCE. The organization of independent city-state ports, v others on the islands and also along other shores of the Mediterranean Sea, to be ideally suited for trade between the Levant area (which was well-off in organic resources) and the rest of the old world. Throughout the early Iron Age, about 1200 BCE, Sea Peoples appeared in the area from the north, which weakened and also destroyed the Egyptians and also Hittites, respectively. In the resulting power vacuum, a variety of Phoenician cities rose as far-ranging maritime powers.

These societies rested on three power-bases: the king; the temple and its priests; and the councils the elders. Byblos an initial became the predominant facility from where the Phoenicians dominated the Mediterranean and Erythraean (Red) Sea routes. The was right here that the very first inscription in the Phoenician alphabet was found, on the sarcophagus the Ahiram (c. 1200 BCE). Tyre rose to strength several century later. Among its kings, the priest Ithobaal (887–856 BCE), ruled Phoenicia as much north as Beirut and also Cyprus. Carthage was established in 814 BCE, under Pygmalion of tire (820–774 BCE). The collection of city-states constituting Phoenicia happened characterized by outsiders and also the Phoenicians as Sidonia or Tyria. Phoenicians and Canaanites alike were dubbed Sidonians or Tyrians, as one Phoenician city involved prominence ~ another.

Phoenician trade Network: Map that Phoenicia and also its trade routes.

Persian Rule

Cyrus the an excellent of Persia overcame Phoenicia in 539 BCE. The Persians split Phoenicia into 4 vassal kingdoms: Sidon, Tyre, Arwad, and also Byblos. Though this vassal kingdoms prospered and also furnished fleets for the Persian kings, Phoenician influence decreased after this period. The is most likely that much of the Phoenician population migrated to Carthage and other nests following the Persian conquest. In 350 or 345 BCE, a rebellion in Sidon to be crushed by Artaxerxes III.

Hellenistic Rule

Alexander the good took tyre in 332 BCE ~ the Siege that Tyre, and kept the present king in power. That gained control of the various other Phoenician urban peacefully, and the rise of Hellenistic Greece progressively ousted the remnants of Phoenicia’s former supremacy over the east Mediterranean profession routes. Phoenician culture disappeared entirely in the motherland. Carthage ongoing to prosper in north Africa. It looked after the mining that iron and also precious metals from Iberia, and also used its significant naval power and also mercenary militaries to defend commercial interests. It to be finally ruined by Rome in 146 BC, in ~ the finish of the Punic Wars.

The Minoans

The Minoans to be an Aegean bronze Age human being on the island of Crete the flourished in between 2800-1450 BCE. Lock left behind comprehensive material society showing the extent of your handicraft and influence top top Mycenaean culture.

Key Takeaways

Key PointsThe Minoan human being was an Aegean copper Age world that arose on the island the Crete, and flourished from around the 27th century to the 15th century BCE.The term “Minoan” to be coined ~ the mythic “king” Minos, that was associated in Greek myth through the labyrinth established with the website at Knossos.The bronze Age allowed upper Minoan class to exercise leadership activities and to expand their influence, eventually replacing the original hierarchies the the neighborhood elites through monarchist power structures.The apex of Minoan civilization occurred during a period of big building projects, as palaces to be rebuilt and settlements sprung up throughout Crete.Evidence that the influence of Minoan world outside Crete deserve to be viewed in Minoan handicraft ~ above the Greek mainland, likely the result of a connection in between Mycene and also Minoan trade networks. The Minoans were additionally connected come Egypt and also the Canaanite civilization.The Minoan civilization declined because of natural catastrophe, but the dynasty of Knossos was able to spread out its influence over Crete until it to be overrun through the Mycenaean Greeks.Minoan society is known ideal for the pottery and also handiwork, and its religion was based mostly on the prayer of mrs goddesses.Key TermsLinear A: The main script supplied in palace and religious writings the the Minoan civilization, among two at this time undeciphered composing systems provided in ancient Crete.Neopalatial period: The duration of the new or second palaces the Minoan Crete, corresponding approximately with 17th and 16th centuries BCE.Knossos: A syllabic manuscript that was offered for creating Mycenaean Greek, the more quickly attested type of Greek.Minoan civilization: an Aegean copper Age people that arose on the island that Crete and also flourished from about the 27th century come the 15th century BCE.Linear B: A syllabic manuscript that was supplied for creating Mycenaean Greek—the more quickly attested form of Greek.

The Minoan people was one Aegean bronze Age civilization that developed on the island the Crete, and flourished from about the 27th century to the 15th century BCE.

Minoan Crete: A map of Minoan Crete.

The early on inhabitants that Crete settled as early as 128,000 BCE, during the center Paleolithic Age. It was not till 5000 BCE that the first signs of advanced agriculture appeared, noting the beginning of civilization. The term “Minoan” to be coined through Arthur Evans after the mythic “king” Minos. Minos was associated in Greek myth v the labyrinth, i beg your pardon is figured out with the website at Knossos.

The copper Age began in Crete around 2700 BCE, when several localities top top the island emerged into centers of commerce and also handwork. This advancement enabled the upper classes to continuously practice leadership activities and to expand their influence. The is most likely that the initial hierarchies the the neighborhood elites were replaced by monarchist strength structures— a precondition for the development of the good palaces.

Around 1700 BCE, there was a big disturbance in Crete, possibly an earthquake or an intrusion from Anatolia. The palaces at Knossos, Phaistos, Malia, and Kato Zakros were destroyed. Yet with the begin of the Neopalatial duration (the 17th and 16th century BCE), populace increased again, palaces were rebuilt ~ above a bigger scale, and new settlements sprung up anywhere the island. This duration represents the apex that the Minoan civilization.


Knossos – phibìc Portico: restored North enntrance gate of the Knossos palace complex, v the charging bull fresco.

The affect of the Minoan human being outside Crete has been viewed in the evidence of an important Minoan handicraft item on the Greek mainland. The is most likely that the ruling home of Mycene was connected to the Minoan profession network. After ~ c. 1700 BCE, the material society on the Greek mainland completed a new level because of Minoan influence. Connections between Egypt and Crete are also prominent. Minoan ceramics are found in Egyptian cities, and the Minoans imported numerous items indigenous Egypt, especially papyrus, as well as architectural and also artistic ideas. The Egyptian hieroglyphs served as a design for Minoan pictographic writing, indigenous which the renowned Linear A and Linear B creating systems later on developed. There has likewise been proof of Minoan influence amongst Canaanite artifacts.

The Minoan culture began to decrease c. 1450 BCE, adhering to an earthquake, the eruption the the Thera volcano, or another possible natural catastrophe. Several crucial palaces in areas such together Mallia, Tylissos, Phaistos, Hagia Triade, and the living soldier of Knossos to be destroyed, yet the palace in Knossos appears to have actually remained largely intact. The preservation of this palace resulted in the empire in Knossos dispersing its influence over huge parts of Crete until it to be overrun through Mycenaean Greeks.

Society and Culture


The finest surviving instances of Minoan art space its pottery and also palace architecture with frescos that encompass landscapes, rock carvings, and also intricately sculpted seal stones. Ceramics indigenous the early on Minoan duration are defined by direct patterns of spirals, triangles, bent lines, crosses, and also fishbone motifs. In the center Minoan period, naturalistic draft such as fish, squid, birds, and also lilies to be common. In the late Minoan period, flowers and animals were still the most characteristic, however the variability had increased. The “palace style” the the region around Knossos is identified by a solid geometric simplification of naturalistic shapes and also monochromatic paintings. The similarities in between Late Minoan and Mycenaean art space notable. Frescoes to be the main form of art during the duration of late Minoan culture.

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The Minoans seem to have actually worshiped mostly goddesses, and can be described as a “matriarchal religion.” Although over there is some proof of male gods, depictions that Minoan goddesses vastly outnumber depictions of noþeles that could be thought about a Minoan god. While some of these depictions of women are speculated come be photos of worshippers and priestesses officiating at spiritual ceremonies, as opposed to the deity, number of goddesses appear to it is in portrayed. These incorporate a mommy goddess that fertility, a mistress that the animals, a protectress of cities, the household, the harvest, and also the underworld, to surname a few. The goddesses are often illustrated with serpents, birds, or poppies, and are often shown with a number of one animal upon her head.