The Institute for Mediterranean Studies (Rethymno, Crete) organised the first summer school on the civilization of ancient Crete in July 2019. Participants included 12 undergraduate, graduate and PhD students from China and Hong King, Brazil, Italy, the United Kingdom and Greece.

Given the great success of 2019, the Institute is pleased to announce the Second Summer school, which will take place between 25th of June – 1st of July 2020.

The prehistoric civilization of Minoan Crete is world-famous and attracts major scholarly and lay attention. As for classical antiquity, the history and archaeology of Crete have largely remained outside wider purview and mainly explored by specialist scholars. This is despite the variety and fascinating nature of the existing sources about ancient Crete and the important questions and answers they provide.

The purpose of this summer school is to introduce participants to the lost world of ancient Crete and its history, archaeology and culture. It will examine how Crete illuminates wider trends and phenomena in ancient history, archaeology and culture, as well as how Cretan communities  differed both between themselves and in relation to the rest of the Greek and the wider Mediterranean world.

The summer school will employ a long-term perspective on ancient Crete, starting from the second millennium BCE through the novel circumstances of the first millennium to the incorporation of ancient Crete into the Roman Empire and the world of late antiquity. This perspective will enable participants to explore both long-term continuities, as well as major changing points in Cretan history and archaeology.

The classes offered will explore writing systems and their uses; material and visual culture; politics and warfare; institutions and laws; economic and social conditions; sexuality and gender; religion; and the image of Crete and Cretans in ancient Greek literature.

The trips to archaeological sites and museums (Knossos, Phaistos, Gortyn, Eleftherna, Herakleion museum) will enable participants to gain a first-hand experience of Cretan topography and the Cretan material world and contextualise the classes based on literary sources, inscriptions and coins.

Classes will be held in the premises of the Institute for Mediterranean Studies, in a stunning complex of buildings of the Venetian and Ottoman era. Accommodation will be provided by the House of Europe, hosted in a traditional refurbished building. Both classes and accommodation will be located in the scenic Old Town of Rethymno, allowing participants to explore also the post-classical history and culture of Crete and its Byzantine, Venetian, Ottoman and Modern Greek phases.

This summer school is addressed to undergraduate and graduate students in the fields of Classics, Ancient History, Archaeology, Philology, Near Eastern studies and Late Antique studies. There is a limited number of places available (between 10-15) in order to offer an intensive learning experience to all participants. The cost will be 750 euros, covering tuition fees, trips to archaeological sites/museums, and accommodation.

The deadline for applications is the 10th of February 2020.

For further information and application forms, please visit the summer school’s web page at

The Organising Committee
Kostas Vlassopoulos (University of Crete) Melina Tamiolaki (University of Crete)