Definition of Minoan in English:

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Pronunciation: /məˈnōn/
Pronunciation: /mīˈnōən/


Relating to or denoting a Bronze Age civilization centered on Crete (circa 3000–1050 bc), its people, or its language.
Example sentences
  • In the same year he proposed the idea that the collapse of Minoan civilization in the Aegean was caused by the eruption of Thera in c. 1500 bc.
  • Divided into two periods by a devastating earthquake that occurred c. 1700 BC, the Minoan civilization was noted particularly for its Linear A script and distinctive palatial art and architecture.
  • The discovery early in the twentieth century of the Minoan civilization at Knossos in Crete revealed the sudden demise of an early Greek settlement of a highly civilized people.


1An inhabitant of Minoan Crete or member of the Minoan people.
Example sentences
  • The Minoans of Crete have long been a popular choice, though there are plenty of other suggestions, one of which, Troy, has been given fresh support by Zangger.
  • With an estimated population of 250,000 people (40,000 in Knossos alone), the Minoans traded with the people of the Fertile Crescent.
  • It greatly influenced the later Mycenacans, whose presence in Crete is attested from the 16th century BC and who succeeded the Minoans in control of the Aegean c. 1400 BC.
2The language or scripts associated with the Minoans.

The Minoan civilization had reached its zenith by the beginning of the late Bronze Age; impressive remains reveal the existence of large urban centers dominated by palaces. The civilization is also noted for its script (see Linear A) and distinctive art and architecture.

Example sentences
  • Maman taught her not only the Latin and French that were the basis of her education, but Sanskrit and ancient Iberian, Aramaic and Minoan - whatever they came across in their readings.
  • This indicated that the language represented by Linear B was an ancient form of Greek, but he wasn't prepared to accept this, being convinced that Linear B was used to write Minoan.


Named after the legendary Cretan king Minos, to whom a palace excavated at Knossos was attributed.

Words that rhyme with Minoan

anthozoan, bryozoan, Goan, hydrozoan, protozoan, protozoon, rowan, Samoan, spermatozoon

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: Mi·no·an

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