By Montana Marose
CCC Journalism Program
CHERRY HILL – Students in a mini-course at the Camden County College Rohrer Center in Cherry Hill are taking an Expedition to the Ancient Mediterranean.
Sessions took place Nov. 7, 14, 21 and Dec. 5 and a final session will take place Dec. 19. The session Dec. 5 focused on the Greek Peninsula.
Mini-course instructor Judy Okun began the lecture by discussing the Bronze Age. The time around 1200 B.C. had a gap in written history because the tribes stopped keeping records and writing, Okun noted.
Next, Okun talked about the Iron Age, a time when people didn’t use bronze when it was available to them. She explained steel is harder to melt because it has a high melting point and people in that age didn’t know how to get a fire that hot.
She then spoke about the Hittites and the first peace treaty with Ramses. She discussed the Sea People and the reasons different tribes received different names, then moved down the timeline to the end of Egypt.
“In 750 B.C. the Iron Age seemed to have had a lot of violence because a lot of groups got overthrown and empires were growing along with power,” Okun stated. She said Canaan helped Egypt and Mesopotamia because it was a huge trade center.
She concluded by noting the Phoenicians developed an alphabet with 22 letters similar to the one used by people who speak and write in English today.
Attendees and married couple Mary and Stanley Cohen said they wished the mini-course had more publicity, stating, “These are really great classes and especially for us older folks. We don’t have much to do.”
Okun’s next course will be a 15-week course called New Worlds and will take place Saturday mornings beginning in January.