The Mediterranean Museum in Stockholm, part 3: Cyprus and the surrounding world

Cyprus’s geographical position and good access to raw materials like copper and timber meant that the island played an important role in the ancient economy. Ships came from all over the eastern Mediterranean to Cyprus, where goods were bought and sold. Through the trade Cyprus came in contact with people from other cultures that contributed to the creation of the Cypriot culture. Among the nations who came to Cyprus through the ages Minoans from Crete, Mycenaeans from mainland Greece, Egyptians, Persians, Phoenicians and Greeks and Romans are mentioned.

The Mediterranean Museum in Stockholm, part 3: Cyprus and the surrounding world

A large selection of objects can be found at the Museum that shows how Cyprus had contact with the outside world.

The most important commodity for Cyprus was copper, which was exported in ingots shaped like stretched ox skin. Outside Turkey a shipwreck has been found from the Bronze Age, dating to 1300 BC. The ship had sailed from Cyprus carrying ten tons of Cypriot copper ingots and tin ingots of unknown origin. Of copper and tin one made bronze – a hugely important metal for the manufacture of tools and weapons.

The Mediterranean Museum in Stockholm, part 3: Cyprus and the surrounding world

Food such as wine and olive oil were also key commodities.

Cyprus’s complex identity evolved during millennia of external influences and local adaptation. The main characteristic of ancient Cyprus is that each period was influenced by various foreign cultures that recasted them into something of their own – something uniquely Cypriot.

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Click here for part 2.

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About Maria Eriksson 1582 Articles
Maria likes to express her-self in both image and text. Having previously lived and worked in Australia specializing in wedding and portrait photography. Maria desires to see and experience new and interesting places with new eyes, and therefore is often on the move. On trips she brings inspiration and ideas for image making. Recently, Maria worked with property photography for various brokerage firms in Sweden. Since March 2014, she resides in North Cyprus.