European Union

Prehistoric Period

The city that we know today has a long history, with its roots in place long before the start of recorded history. The first permanent inhabitants of Athens arrived towards the end of the Neolithic Era, between 3500 and 3200 BCE. They settled primarily on the north and south slopes of the Acropolis. Apart from taking care of their basic needs, these people also adorned their bodies with bone and stone jewelry and may have painted their faces with ocher.

Gradually the settlements expanded. Traces can be found of their relations and contact with settlements in other areas of Greece. The Athenian way of life adapted to Mycenaean cultural habits, but there were also long periods when they seemed to be isolated from the rest of Greece, uninvolved with other settlements with traditions preserved for long periods of time.
At the beginning of the 13th century BCE, a palace in the Mycenaean style was built on the Rock of the Acropolis and the surroundings were fortified with the strong “Cyclopean Walls.” In the next century, however, conditions changed. The growth and prosperity of the Mycenaean world was halted, and the population of Athens fell into decline.

By the 8th century BCE, Athens once again entered a period of expansion. A new form of organization emerged – the city-state – and writing returned after centuries. A new world of literature began to flourish. The first small temple dedicated to Athena was built on the Acropolis on the site of the ruined Mycenaean palace, and many other public buildings and sanctuaries were added before the end of the 7th century.

Gradually the Acropolis became the religious center of Athens, the Ancient Agora became the center of the political life of the city, and the city-state gradually begins to take shape as a democracy. Athens was undergoing vast social and political changes, and at the dawn of a new era was eventually completely reorganized.

Contact Details

Athens Development and

Destination Management Agency

 

Xenofontos 7, 105 57

Athens, Greece

 

+30 210 32 53 123

+30 210 52 01 611

 

info@developathens.gr

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