Crete in Ancient Times

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Part 2: Industry and Invention

The island of Crete itself contained a good many trees. The Cretans were hunter-gatherers, for the most part, and also had farms of wheat and olives. Large parts of the island weren't usable for crops but could be used for pastures. The plentiful sheep, pigs, and goats were kept as herds.

The Minoans built roads between their cities. These were not as durable as the famed Roman roads, but they did well enough.

Industries on Crete included clothing, weapons, pottery, medicinal plants, and things made of gold. Because Crete was an island in the middle of a body of water through which many ships passed, the merchants of Crete were in a good position to become traders. Cretan ships carried Cretan goods to and from Phoenician and Greek settlements alike. Cretans also carried goods from one place to another, such as trees from Lebanon to Egypt. Ships from Crete also traded between Syria and Babylon.

In this way, the influence of Crete spread throughout the entire ancient world, at least the civilizations that bordered the Mediterranean and Aegean Seas.

Also amazing was the sewer and drain system, especially in the great palaces. These ideas were much more advanced than the plumbing systems of other civilizations of the time.

Next page > Religion and the Arts > Page 1, 2, 3

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David White