II. Ancient and Classical Periods, 3500 B.C.E.–500 C.E. > B. Kingdoms of Western Asia and Africa, to 323 B.C.E. > 7. Asia Minor, c. 3000–333 B.C.E. > b. Economy, Technology, Society, and Culture
  PREVIOUS NEXT  
CONTENTS · SUBJECT INDEX · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
  The Encyclopedia of World History.  2001.
 
 
b. Economy, Technology, Society, and Culture
 
In the fertile valleys of the west, as well as the Konya valley and Cilicia, grain, olives, and grapes were grown. Raising stock was important in the more mountainous regions. Both the Taurus and southwest Anatolia had mines, which provided copper, silver, iron, and gold. Since the peninsula lay on the land bridge to Europe and was the sea route from the Mediterranean to the Black Sea, trade was always a large part of the economy. The earliest writings in Asia Minor are 19th-century B.C.E. records of the Assyrian merchant colony at Kanesh in Cappadocia (See c. 1900–1813). In a later period, both Hattic and Hittite were written in cuneiform. After the fall of the Hittite Empire, so-called hieroglyphic Hittite was used to write inscriptions in the Luwian language. The Phrygians used an alphabet borrowed from the Phoenicians, but their language remains untranslatable.  1
The Hittite Empire adopted the palace bureaucracy of the Mesopotamian kingdoms along with the cuneiform script. Although the Hittite king was called the Sun and served as military leader, high priest, and judge, the Hittite state was not centralized, but feudal. Chariot-riding nobility were allotted serfs for their support in exchange for military service. The city-states of the west and south generally were ruled by kings, and some regions, like the Pontic coast, remained tribal in organization.  2
The Hattians worshipped the sun goddess Wurusemu and the storm god Taru; the Hurrians, Teshup and Hepat; and the Luwians, Tarkhunt. The Hittite religion was peculiarly syncretistic and mixed Hattic, Hurrian, Luwian, Akkadian, and Sumerian gods with native Hittite deities such as the sun goddess Arinna. The chief deities of the Phrygians were Cybele (or Ma, the Great Mother) and Attis, a god who died and was resurrected. Little is known about the religion of the Lydians: the gods Santas and Baki (Bacchus) were named in their inscriptions.  3
 
 
 
The Encyclopedia of World History, Sixth edition. Peter N. Stearns, general editor. Copyright © 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Maps by Mary Reilly, copyright 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

CONTENTS · SUBJECT INDEX · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
  PREVIOUS NEXT