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The 20 Coolest Unsolved Mysteries in History

By Becky Ferreira Sep 18, 2013

17 of 21

The Bronze Age Collapse

In the span of only a half-century, every major culture in the Eastern Mediterranean basin collapsed into ruin, catapulting the ancient world into the Greek Dark Ages. And we have NO. IDEA. WHY. What was this apocalyptic tremor that so swiftly and violently capped off the Bronze Age in the Fertile Crescent? Some historians believe it was an actual tremor — there was, after all, a lot of volcanic and seismic activity during this time, which certainly didn't help matters. Other historians attribute the sudden fall of these enormous city-states to nomadic raiders, climate change, or advanced weaponry.

One thing is for certain: 1200-1150 BCE was not a good time to be alive in the cradle of civilization, because a relentless, real-life doomsday was evidently going down. The Bronze Age Collapse has come to be emblematized by the legendary fall of Troy, which was among the dozens of city-states destroyed during this brief and mysterious period of mass death.

Tags: history, slideshows, puzzles, mysteries, unsolved mysteries

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About the Author
Becky Ferreira

Becky Ferreira is a writer, performer, and raptor based in New York.

Wanna contact a writer or editor? Email contribute@sparknotes.com.

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