A historical summary Walk and Cycle in Crete
6000 BC Cultivation of cereals, olive and grape vines.
Cult of the fertility goddess, a small statue with large buttocks and thighs.
3000 BC Copper starts to replace stone.
2600 BC New settlers bring improved copper working and
later bronze technology.
Start of the Minoan Age.
A peaceful seafaring economy trading round the
Aegean, producing pottery, seal stones, oil,
perfume and wines in exchange for leather, gold
silver and even stone.
2300 BC Increasing influences of Anatolian art.
2000 BC Kamares ware pottery and direct trade with
Construction of the complex palaces of Knossos,
Malia, Phaestos, Agia Triada. Building of large
1750 BC Much destruction of palaces.
1700 BC Palaces rebuilt to a grander design making more use of columns and light wells. Art flourishes. Cretan navy controls the Aegean. Cretan colonies develop in Sicily, Syria and Arabia.
1450 BC Palaces of Phaestos, Agia Triada and Tylissos destroyed by fire, cause unknown.
1400 BC Palace of Knossos destroyed. Introduction of new styles of weapons, social and political organisation, new gods and a new calendar but many features of Minoan civilisation continue, including place names continue.
67 BC Wars between Cretan cities. Dorian or classical Greek period.
67 BC Conquered by Rome. Gortyn becomes the Roman Capital of Crete.
59 AD Christianity introduced.
323 AD Roman Empire splits into East and West.
395 AD Crete becomes part of the Eastern Roman
Empire - Byzantine.
824 AD Saracen pirates seize control of Crete and fortify
961 AD Byzantine Empire regains control of Crete.
1211 AD The fourth crusade loots Byzantium and sells
Crete to the Venetians.
1669 Crete is part of the Venetian Republic.
1453 Cretans fight the Venetians.
1641 Ottoman Turks land at Hania.
1669 The last Cretan city - Iraklion - falls to the Turks
and the Venetians abandon Crete.
1868 Cretans fight the Turks.
1821 Greek revolution, mainland achieves
1866 Arkadi monastery blown up in a gesture of
defiance as the Turks storm the building.
1868 Great Powers intervene in the administration of
Crete but this administration degenerates.
1898 Revolution again.
1897 Great fire in Hania.
British, Russian, French and Italian forces
1898 Turkish forces withdraw from Crete.
1906 Cretan State under Prince George and the Great
1906 Power devolved to elected Cretan assembly.
1910 Venizelos becomes President and Prime Minister
of Crete, but resigns to become Prime Minister
1913 Crete achieves union with Greece.
1922 Greece attempts to regain the Greek speaking
cities under Turkish rule but is defeated by Turkey. In a resulting exchange of populations Crete receives 13000 Greek speaking refugees from the the Turkish empire and loses its Islamicised Cretans.
1941 German airborne invasion around the Maleme airfield spearheads a rapid advance over the island. Allied forces retreat south through the gorges, some escape, others hidden by Cretans. Many are captured. 15000 die.
Crete Occupied by the Germans. Cretans fight the Germans.
1945 Crete liberated but with one in six villages destroyed and an economy in ruins.
Crete is spared the worst civil war between 1944 -1949.
1951 Greece enters NATO and the American 6th fleet is based on Crete.
1951 to the present day.
Development of the tourist industry.