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When Mycenaean society broke up around 1100 BC, the commercial routes that
had linked mainland Greece with the rest of the Mediterranean were severed.
After a period of prolonged recovery, the Greeks began colonizing the shore
regions of the Mediterranean and Black seas. This movement (ca. 750-550 BC)
was propelled by the need for living space for a rapidly expanding population
and for new markets. The colonies had access to unrestricted native markets
and were able to supply Greece with wheat, meat, dried fish, hides, wool,
timber and basic metals in exchange for mainland finished products, olive
oil and wine. Trade exposed Greek domestic markets to imported luxury products
from Egypt, the Levant, Asia Minor and elsewhere. These had an important impact
on Greek art during its formative years (750-600 BC). By 300 BC Greek manufactured
goods were freely circulating to North Africa, Spain, the Rhone valley, the
Balkans, and as far east as India. (Map 33k) Click here for Pottery
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