Crete Island

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Source– This post on Crete Island is based on the article “A Big, Round, 4,000-Year-Old Stone Building Discovered on a Cretan Hilltop” published in “Arkeonews” on 13th June 2024.

Why in the News?

During excavations for an airport on Crete, a large circular monument dating back 4000 years was unearthed.

About Crete Island

Crete Integrated Map

1. Crete is the largest island in Greece and the fifth largest in the Mediterranean Sea.

2. It is located in the southern part of the Aegean Sea.

3. The island is bordered by the Sea of Crete to the north, the Libyan Sea to the south, the Myrtoan Sea to the west, and the Carpathian Sea to the east.

4. The island is dominated by rugged mountains that crisscross from west to east. The highest point on the island is Mt. Ida, also known as Psiloritis.

About its historical context

1. Crete has been inhabited since the Paleolithic Age by early hominids. The earliest advanced European civilization, the Minoan Civilization, began on the island around 2700-1420 BCE.

2. The Minoan civilization ended after a major earthquake, and thereafter, the island’s rule was taken over by the Mycenaean civilization.

3. After the Mycenaean period, Crete was ruled by various powers, including the Romans, the Byzantines, the Andalusians, the Venetians, and the Ottomans. Following its independence from Ottoman rule, Crete became part of Greece.

4. During the Second World War, the island was occupied by Nazi German forces and served as the battleground for the famous “Battle of Crete.”

UPSC Syllabus: Geography

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