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One scholar once said that the Greek never invented anything, but they made everything better. There is some truth to this, as the Greeks borrowed from other cultures and made these things their own. This can be seen in important ways when we consider the Egyptians, Phoenicians, and the Minoans.
We read from Herodotus and Plato that the Greeks certainly had contact with the Egyptians. In fact, many of the religious practices and belief of the Greeks can be said to have come from contact with Egypt. This is why we many parallels.
When we approach the Phoenicians, the same can be said. Arguably the great borrowing from the Phoenicians was the Greek alphabet. We can also add to this maritime activity, as the Phoenicians were the great seafarers of the ancient world.
Finally, when we come to the Minoans, we can say that there also was a lot of influence. The great palace culture in Crete (Knossos) certainly influenced the Greeks. For example, many of the Linear B tablets, which were found in Crete were also found in the Greek mainland. From this we can say that the Minoans influenced the Greeks in record keeping, administration, religious stories, and much more.
From these points, the Greeks really did borrow from their neighbors.
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