Essay on Mycenaean Greece

Submitted By talhakhn
Words: 1629
Pages: 7

Mycenae was an empire that was located in modern Peloponnese of southern Greece, where once stood a great Mycenaean fortified palace. Being the last empire of the ancient Greek Bronze Age, Mycenae inspired many works of Ancient Greek literature, myths and the famous Iliad by Homer. Mycenae is celebrated by Homer as the reward dedicated to King Agamemnon, who led the Greeks to victory in the Trojan War. However, as an empire rises it has to fall as well. The Mycenaean civilization thrived during the period of 1600 BC and completely perished, due to invasion, at the time of 1100 BC. Although the Empire has perished, the remains of primary sources such as the Pylos and Knossos tablets assist us to evaluate the culture and tradition of the Mycenaean empire. With these sources, historians can clarify the social class, economic outcome and artistic creativity of the inspirational empire. The society of the Mycenaean empire consisted of a flatten hierarchical structure which consisted of the basic classes such as: the Wanax, who was the King of the empire, followed by the Lawagetas who guided the King and had the authority to control the army, as well as the Telestas who serviced the King and the Lawagetas and the Equeta who control the day to day basis of the society. This structure supports the economy through the ability to exchange goods in the form of barter and hence the focus of the economy allows the craftsmen to provide such artistic work so that they could be traded. This is how the connectivity of all three succeeded the civilization from than five centuries.

The Mycenaean empire consisted of a conventional hierarchical structure which resulted in the making of this fascinating Greek society. Although the empire had an obsession with their reputation of being a warrior profile focused empire, which promoted battles and conquered territories, they also portrayed an example of being a typical inequality society which clearly separated the rich from the poor. There are many different levels which ascend from the hierarchy of Mycenae. This important structure of society allowed the Mycenaean’s to build up there civilization, which consisted of defense and the economy. The first and foremost important level which ruled the empire was called the ‘Wanax’. The Wanax was the highest grade a Mycenaean could reach, which was the King. The King implemented the laws and determined the rate of tax each civilian had to pay. Additionally the King held the authority of controlling all conquered land, and according to the tablets of Pylos, the Wanax, from his own offering, would specifically propose the land to the gods. Religiously, the king was the one who would offer traditions to the gods. Following the importance of the Wanax, the next in line which guided the King were known as the Lawagetas. In the Homer’s Iliad, the word ‘Laos’ defines as the Mycenaean army. This compares with the Lawagetas as it refers to him being the controller of the society’s main force, the army. The Lawagetas’s duties were to impose the orders of the state and to lead the army in military operations. The amount of land the Lawagetas owned certainly justified his place as the second highest commander of the Mycenaean Empire. Furthermore the tablets of Pylos and the Knossos also mentions the officials of the society identified as the Telestas. The Telestas was an enormous office of many officials which collectively owned land that approximately equalized the Wanax. The Knossos suggests that the officials received the reward for being religiously prioritized. However, the Pylos advocates that the officials receive their awards from the serviced allocated to the society. Moreover, the text’s supplements another level of the hierarchy of the empire acknowledged as the equeta. However, this level is rewarded from the Wanax and has a limited level of rights regarding landholding. The Pylos verifies that they appear as the representatives of the central…