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Lecture: 1177 B.C.—The Year Civilization Collapsed

November 4, 2017
Fulleton Hall
Free with museum admission

In 1177 B.C., after centuries of cultural and technological evolution, the civilized and international world of the Mediterranean regions came to a dramatic halt in a vast area stretching from Greece and Italy to Egypt, Canaan, and Mesopotamia, resulting in the world’s first recorded Dark Ages. Blame for the end of the Late Bronze Age is usually laid squarely at the feet of the so-called Sea Peoples, but it is much more likely that a series of events, both human and natural, coalesced to create a “perfect storm” that brought the age to an end. In this illustrated lecture, based on his award-winning book of the same title, Eric H. Cline of the George Washington University explores why the Bronze Age ended and whether the collapse of those ancient civilizations might hold some warnings for our current society.

This lecture is generously sponsored by the Boshell Family Foundation.

Fragment of a Relief Portraying Neferhotep, New Kingdom, early Dynasty 19 (1292-1202 B.C.). Egyptian. Lois H. Culver Fund, 1924.579.