Mycenae Essay

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?Mycenae in southern Greece is one of the oldest cities in the world, the center of rich myth, culture, and history.? For centuries, legends abounded about the wealth, fame, and power of this city, particularly concerning its involvement in the Trojan War.? Yet, just 200 years ago, people wondered whether the ancient city of Mycenae even existed.? However, archaeological work in the past two centuries has confirmed the existence and greatness of this ancient civilization.? The major finds include the city?s walls, palace, and tombs.? These discoveries provide a connection to this ancient city and make it come to life again today.

?Our first knowledge of Mycenae came from Greek legends written by ancient
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The famous archaeologist, Heinrich Schliemann, wanting to authenticate the Trojan War, began searching for the famed cities sung about by Homer.? In 1876 he was successful in uncovering some of the remains of Mycenae, confirming the existence of this ancient city.? His work, naturally, sparked a renewed interest in Greek archaeology.? In addition to Mycenae, several other cities that were part of the Mycenaean empire were found.

While early work was very successful in uncovering remains of the city, not many written records were found.? But in 1939, archaeologists began digging up written tablets throughout the Mycenaean world.? The writing on these tablets was an unfamiliar script, referred to as Linear B.? In 1952, a major breakthrough was made with the deciphering of the Mycenaean language.? This language, in fact, was an early form of Greek and possibly developed on Crete (LFC 5).? The combination of this new knowledge, along with the extensive archeological work, has allowed scholars to piece together a solid history of Mycenaean civilization.

The Mycenaean Age refers not only to the actual city of Mycenae, but also to the civilization between the years 1600 to 1100 B.C. in the area we know today as the Peloponnesus of southern Greece.? Other influential centers included Argos, Tiryns, Sparta, Athens, and Crete.? Mycenaean cities were characterized by the archaeological feats exhibited in their citadels, palaces, and tombs.? As the society developed, a complex
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