2700 BC - 1450 BC
The Minoan civilization was based on the island of Crete during the Bronze Age. The capital of the Minoan culture was situated at Knossos, a site excavated by Sir Arthur Evans after 1900. During their most developed stages, the Minoans built great palaces, employed languages called Linear A and Linear B, and produced fine frescoes and pottery, much of which depicted marine and agricultural themes. It is believed that between 1500 and 1450 B.C. the decline of this civilization was caused by an earthquake and the eruption of the volcanic island of Thera.