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Mycenaean trade with the east Mediterranean

Gilmore, John (1977) Mycenaean trade with the east Mediterranean. Masters thesis, Durham University.

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From archaeological evidence it is clear that the Mycenaean's enjoyed widespread commercial relations with the countries of the East Mediterranean, and this thesis is a study of the material objects of this trade. Their distinctive pottery appears to have been the most important commodity exported by the Mycenaean's: fragments and whole vases have been excavated at scores of Late Bronze Age sites in the East Mediterranean, in Asia Minor, Cyprus, Syria, Palestine and Egypt. The majority of the vases found belong to the 14th and 13th Centuries and their distribution is one of our strongest proofs for the existence of flourishing trade relations at this time. Commerce thrived because these 200 years represented a period of stability in the East Mediterranean. The great ports of the Levant and Cyprus were visited not only by Mycenaean traders but by merchants from all the neighbouring countries. Pottery was not the only commodity featured in the trade. Bronzes from Greece indicate that the Mycenaean's had an extensive metal industry and their supplies of copper and tin were imported. The copper came from Cyprus in the form of ingots. These metals were essential to a Late Bronze Age civilisation, but other finds from excavated graves and settlements on the Mainland prove that the Mycenaean's also obtained luxury materials such as gold, silver, ivory and semi-precious stones. These were imported as raw materials and then fashioned by Mycenaean craftsmen. The Linear B tablets, although they do not discuss foreign trade, throw light on some of the types of materials which must have been traded, including certain perishable goods which have not survived to be excavated by the archaeologist. Each chapter deals with a particular commodity featured in the trade, and in the conclusion the extent of trade with each country is summed up. An accompanying folder contains maps and photographs.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Award:Master of Arts
Thesis Date:1977
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:14 Mar 2014 17:02

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