Who were the Minoans?

Knossos Palace, Crete






Minoans - Phoenicians

 I is widely known that the beautiful Minoan palace society thrived on the large island of Crete in the Aegean Sea from roughly 2000 BC to 1500 BC.  These people were known for their grand palaces, fabulous arts, written records, laws and sea trade.  It is widely agreed that this highly cultured society, along with the more military Mycenaean society of the mainland, was a major contributor to the Greek society which followed.

But who were these remarkable people, and from where did they come?

One school of thought suggested the Minoans simply evolved from local farmers, creating everything in their amazing society themselves.  The opposing view was that many borrowings were made from older societies in the Eastern Mediterranean -- the Egyptians, Phoenicians, Mesopotamians and others.

Several excellent new discoveries now make it clear who the Minoans were, and how they developed their glittering society.  You can read the entire account in the academic paper which was presented at California State University, Long Beach by Sanford Holst on June 24, 2006.

[ To see the complete paper ]

[ click here ]


The paper demonstrates the crucial role played by the Phoenicians and the pre-Greek people of Crete in the creation of the Minoans.  Egyptian culture brought from Africa also played a significant role, as did contributions from other lands.

A more in-depth and people-oriented view of the Minoans and Phoenicians is found in Chapters 7 to 10 of the book Phoenician Secrets: Exploring the Ancient Mediterranean.  This includes many photographs, frescoes and maps which visually present this beautiful society.

Excerpt on Minoans and

Phoenicians from the book

Physical evidence at archaeological sites shows us that the roots of Western civilization were not an all-European affair, but rather a merger of East and West. Diversity was accepted then—and should be accepted today—as the normal and natural way forward to something better . . . and sometimes to something great.

Among the other experts cited in the paper are Colin Renfrew, John Cherry, Jeremy Rutter, Martin Bernal, Mary Lefkowitz, Guy Rogers, Patricia Bikai, Glenn Markoe, Lesley Fitton, Martin Nilsson, Clive Gamble, Paul Halstead, Michael Grant, Tjeerd Van Andel, Curtis Runnels, W.A. Ward, Keith Branigan, Saul Weinberg, L. Vance Watrous, James Walter Graham, Vivian Davies, Renee Friedman, Herodotus, Thucydides, Jerry Bentley, Herbert Ziegler, Miriam Lichtheim, Maurice Dunand, Sturt Manning, Philip Betancourt, B.J. Kemp and R.S. Merrillees.

Related subjects include Knossos, Phaistos disk, Malia, Zakros, Kommos, Agia Triada, Iraklion, Heraklion, Mount Ida, labyrinth, double-axe, King Minos, Minotaur, Daedalus, Pasiphae, Theseus, Ariadne, the Thera volcano eruption, and earthquakes.

Contents of This Site



Ancient Ships and Sea Trade

Carthage, Hannibal

Punic Wars, Peace

Ancient Mediterranean

Egypt, Pyramids & Cedar

Sea Peoples

The Minoans

Solomon's Temple

Templars in Lebanon



Phoenicians Images

Cedars of Lebanon

Byblos, Sidon and Tyre




Adonis Legend

Aphrodite Legend

Isis and Osiris Legend

Europa Legend

Elissa Legend

Phoenicians Home Page

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