The woman in Minoic Crete

J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med. 2011 Jul;24(7):968-72. doi: 10.3109/14767058.2010.531328. Epub 2010 Dec 1.


Introduction: Minoan Civilization (3000-1150 BC) was the first European civilization on the GREEK island of Crete. Fabulous architectonical constructions like great palaces, wonderful frescoes, and pottery as well as jewellery characterize this amazing civilization. According to all existing descriptions from ancient Greek historians and philosophers like Plato, Thucydides, Strabon but also from all the archaeological findings men and women lived freely and peacefully participating equal in all daily activities, sports, and games. The women were predominating. Minoan women enjoyed a higher social status than other women in later civilizations.

Methods: Investigation of all the existing data concerning the Minoan culture. Archaeological databases, as well as data from the National University of Athens and other Greek historical institutions were collected and analyzed in order to present the Minoan culture.

Conclusion: The Minoic civilization represents a paradigm of a well being society in which the woman played a dominant role. She was the 'mother' but also the 'active woman', who participated in all city activities. Four thousand years later a prototype of a society in which the role of the mother was recognized in an admirably way remains a magnificent paradigm.

Publication types

  • Historical Article

MeSH terms

  • Culture*
  • Greece, Ancient
  • History, Ancient
  • Women / history*