|Dates||circa 3,200 B.C.E. — circa 2,000 B.C.E.|
|Major sites||Phylakopi, Keros, Syros|
|Preceded by||Neolithic Greece|
|Followed by||Minoan civilization|
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Cycladic civilization (also known as Cycladic culture or The Cycladic period) is an Early Bronze Age culture of the Cyclades, Greece, in the Aegean Sea, spanning the period from approximately 3200–2000 BC.
- History 1
- Archaeology 2
- References 3
- See also 4
The significant Late Neolithic and Early Bronze Age Cycladic culture is best known for its schematic flat female idols carved out of the islands' pure white marble centuries before the great Middle Bronze Age ("Minoan") culture arose in Crete, to the south. These figures have been stolen from burials to satisfy the Cycladic antiquities market since the early 20th century. Only about 40% of the 1,400 figurines found are of known origin, since looters destroyed evidence of the rest.
A distinctive Neolithic culture amalgamating Anatolian and mainland Greek elements arose in the western Aegean before 4000 BC, based on Delos, which retained its archaic reputation as a sanctuary through the period of Classical Greek civilization (see Delian League).
The chronology of Cycladic civilization is divided into three major sequences: Early, Middle and Late Cycladic. The early period, beginning c. 3000 BC segued into the archaeologically murkier Middle Cycladic c. 2500 BC. By the end of the Late Cycladic sequence (c. 2000 BC) there was essential convergence between Cycladic and Minoan civilization.
There is some tension between the dating systems used for Cycladic civilization, one "cultural" and one "chronological". Attempts to link them lead to varying combinations; the most common are outlined below:
|Cycladic chronology |
|Early Cycladic I (ECI)||Grotta-Pelos|
|Early Cycladic II (ECII)||Keros-Syros culture|
|Early Cycladic III (ECIII)||Kastri|
|Middle Cycladic I (MCI)||Phylakopi|
|Middle Cycladic II (MCII)|
|Middle Cycladic III (MCIII)|
|Late Cycladic I|
|Late Cycladic II|
|Late Cycladic II|
The first archaeological excavations of the 1880s were followed by systematic work by the frying pans.
Early Cycladic culture evolved in three phases, between ca. 3300 and 2000 BC, when it was increasingly submerged in the rising influence of Minoan Crete. Excavations at Knossos on Crete reveal an influence of Cycladic civilization upon Knossos in the period 3400 BC to 2000 BC as evidenced from pottery finds at Knossos.
- Chronology and Terminology of The Prehistoric Archaeology of the Aegean accessed May 23, 2006
- , The Modern Antiquarian, (2007)Knossos FieldnotesC.Michael Hogan,