Ancient Greece: an Illustrated History In the third millennium BCE, a relatively sophisticated culture grew up on both the Greek mainland and the surrounding islands. In particular, the inhabitants of the Cyclades began to produce beautiful works of sculpture.
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Greece consists of mainland Greece on the Balkan Peninsula and a mass of islands, large and small, scattered over the Aegean Sea and extending as far south as Crete in the Mediterranean.
The climate is volatile, with extreme fluctuations in temperature, strong winds, and sudden downpours of torrential rain. The main agricultural products are olives, grapes, and figs. In ancient times, both cattle and horses were grazed in the eastern central regions of mainland Greece.
Greece in the Stone Age There is evidence of Stone Age hunters living in mainland Greece in the Paleolithic Age, and by the seventh millennium BCE, it seems that farming communities were established.
These early farmers lived in villages of circular mud huts, grew grains, peas, and lentils, and kept animals, such as pigs, cattle, goats, and sheep, for meat and milk. The farmers supplemented their diet by hunting and fishing and made stone tools such as axes and chisels.
By the end of the Neolithic Age, people were living in walled towns, in which some large houses had a central hall—indicating that some individuals had now become wealthier than others, or had even become chieftains.
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