Aegeus Society For Aegean Prehistory


29 April 2013

Bronze Age Greece

John Bennet in Fibiger Bang, P. & Scheidel, W. (eds), 2013. The Oxford Handbook of the State in the Ancient Near east and Mediterranean, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 235-258.

From the introduction

There are two episodes of state formation in the prehistoric Aegean, one at the beginning, the other in the middle of the second millennium BCE. The first states are associated with the appearance of complex structures conventionally called “palaces” on the island of Crete shortly after 2000 BCE (the MM IB phase); the second with the emergence of distinctive “palaces” of different form on the Greek mainland around the middle of the second millennium. Neither appearance was “pristine” and this means that the region is of considerable interest as a case study in first-generation (i.e, the first states to appear in a region) and secondary (i.e., states forming on the basis of interaction with preexisting polities) state formation.


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