Greek history started in the prehistoric period. Since there was no written language back then little is known about the lives of these people. The names of the subdivisions of this period are derived from their technology. The Neolithic Age stone, Bronze Age, and the Iron Age. Two different cultures existed during these periods; the Minoans and the Mycenaeans. The Minoans, names after their mythical king Minos lived on the island of Crete from 3000 to 1400 BC. They were a wealthy empire who feared no one. The palace of the king has wide-open spaces and is not very well guarded. They had a well-devised economic system and kept record on clay tablets. Minoans worshiped fertility statues robust female figures. Their written language has yet to be decoded, for this reason, not much more is known about Minoan culture.The Mycenaeans lived from 2000 to 1200 BC on mainland Greece. It seems that they were very warlike people and feared the threat of their neighbors. Their fortresses composed heavily fortified walls and were usually on hilltops. Mycenaeans learned bronze work and other crafts from their with the Minoans. The 15th century BC brought about the destruction of the Minoan palaces. This is thought to be due to natural and human causes. With the Minoans out of the way, Mycenae gained a great deal. They expanded their sea trade and took over the Minoan palace at Knossos. Clay tablets have been found with Linear B script (which has been decoded).
About 200 years after the destruction of the Minoan palaces, the Mycenaean palaces were also destroyed. So people fled to the east, their language was forgotten and so no one knows what happened during the 300 years called the Dark Ages. As the Dark Ages ended a new Greek script was created Homer wrote the epic poems; the Iliad and the Odyssey the oldest and finest Greeks writings. Many times came and went. These were the Geometric period, the Archaic Age and the Classical Age. During the Archaic Age the gap between social classes grew wider and social unrest was on the rise. During the Classical Age the economic and political power of Greece s mainland city-states was at their apex. Athens was the most powerful of these city-states with Sparta second. They went to war and after thirty years Athens was defeated. Alexander the Great was one of the most powerful kings of his time. After his death the empire split into three pieces. The final period in Greek history is the Hellenistic Age. These city-states had little political power, but Greek language and art influenced many regions.