The existence of
major palaces is evidence for states large
enough to require administrative centers, but
their number implies that government was
regarded the size of Knossos as proof that its
king exercised suzerainty over the whole
This theory is reinforced by the
marked similarity in plan and construction of
all the palaces. Yet this implies no more than a
common architectural and artistic
The existence of administrative records
outside the main center shows that the other palaces had a measure of
independence. Some kind of federal
organization may have existed. Palaces and luxurious houses
imply a king and an aristocracy.
A fresco from Thera depicting a fleet shows
high officials in colored robes seated on the deck of the richly decorated
The bulk of
the population were obviously employed in agricultural pursuits, and a small class
of craftsmen would have been needed to provide luxury goods.
overseas contacts comes from the Minoan pottery found in many parts
of the eastern Mediterranean.Whether the pottery itself was traded,
or only its contents, is not always clear.
Some of the decorated
vessels can only have been exported for their
own value, but trade in olive oil, wine, and
perfumes was likely.
has poor mineral resources, and metals must
have been mainly
other hand, timber, which is now scarce, may
well have been plentiful.
Luxury goods such as gold
and ivory were
be proved that the raw material for some of the
stone vessels made in Crete was brought from