Aegean Civilizations: Neolithic to Hellenistic Age
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Table of Contents Neolithic and Bronze Greece Slide 5 The Minoans Slide 18 The Mycenaeans Slide 28 The Dorians Slide 54 The Archaic Period Slide 62 Sparta Slide 81 Athens Slide 96 Corinth Slide 116 Archaic Poets and Philosophers Slide 123 The Persian Wars Slide 132 The Golden Age of Pericles Slide 159 Greek Sculpture Slide 186 Classical writers and philosophers Slide 195 The Corinthian War Slide 213 The Late Classical Period Slide 222 Hellenistic Age Slide 234
Standard 2B The student understands the major cultural achievements of Greek civilization. STANDARD 2 The emergence of Aegean civilization and how interrelations developed among peoples of the eastern Mediterranean and Southwest Asia, 600-200 BCE. National Standards for History: Era 3: Classical Traditions, Major Religions, and Giant Empires, 1000 BCE-300 CE Standard 2C The student understands the development of the Persian (Achaemenid) empire and the consequences of its conflicts with the Greeks. Standard 2A The student understands the achievements and limitations of the democratic institutions that developed in Athens and other Aegean city-states.
Neolithic and Bronze Age Greece
Map of Greece
Bronze Age economy
Bronze Age trading
Bronze Age invaders
Scientists use the abbreviation BCE to mean “Before Common Era.” It is the same thing as BC (“Before Christ.”). After the year 0, scientists use the term CE for Common Era. It is the same as AD (Anno Domini). To figure out how long ago a date in BCE was from today, simply add the current year to the BCE year. For example, from the year 2000 CE, the year 8000 BCE was 10,000 years ago. Before Common Era (BCE) Years 6000 5000 4000 3000 2000 1000 0 1000 2000 Before Common Era (BCE) Common Era (CE)
NEOLITHIC PERIOD, 6500-2900 BCE Around 5800 BCE, people lived in small houses made of sticks and mud at Nea Nikomedia. This type of house is called wattle and daub. The village was surrounded by a wooden fence. The villagers used clay pots to store food and liquids. Neolithic means “new stone age.” This was a time when humans domesticated plants and animals and lived in permanent villages. Map: Nea Nikomedia Neolithic Greek vase
Another Neolithic village was called Sesklo. People lived there around 5000 BCE. These people decorated their pottery with red and white patterns. Their village was surrounded by a stone wall. Neolithic Village: Sesklo Sesklo pottery Remains of Sesklo, circa 5000 BCE
Sesklo villages were led by a “head man”, usually the most powerful man of the tribe who settled disputes and led the village men into battle. Clay figurines from Sesklo Sesklo was destroyed around 4000 BCE by invaders from the north. They attacked using bow and arrows. The villagers of Sesklo did not know how to use bow and arrows. Sesklo Ruins
Dhimini was another Neolithic village in Greece. Note the stone walls surrounding the village. Artist impression of Dhimini c. 3700 BCE.
Aegean Bronze Age 2900-2000 BCE
Early Bronze Age Aegean villages were organized by family relation and numbered from 300 to 1000 people.
Villages show central planning.
They were about 1 to 3 hectares* in size and were built on hills. Villages were all close (less than 40 miles) to the Mediterranean Sea.
Houses were built close together but the streets were winding.
Homes had stone foundations and sun-baked brick walls.
Houses could be rectangular, round, or trapezoidal.
Houses had stone hearths for cooking, stone benches for sleeping, and stone slabs for tables.
*A hectare is 10,000 square meters, which is 2.47 acres, or about two football fields.
During the Bronze Age, Aegean people planted barley, peas, olives and grapes. They melted copper with tin to make bronze. They raised sheep, goats and cattle for leather, wool, and meat. Olives Grape vines Peas The Bronze Age
During the Bronze Age villagers became specialized in making pottery, carving stone and bone, making fabric and working with bronze. Craftsmen used special seals to mark the quality of a product. These are like product logos used today. Bronze Age crafts Bronze Age seal
Around 2300 BCE, the Greek mainland was invaded by different tribes. Bronze Age invaders Tumuli graves Pottery wheel They brought new ideas, like using horses, pottery wheels, and burial mounds. The invaders all spoke an early Greek language. The Greeks of this time were called “Hellenes.”
The invaders built rectangular houses and did not make walls around their cities. They used barter to trade for food and crafts. Barter – The direct exchange of one good or service for another without the use of money. rectangular floor plan
Map of Crete
Crete is about 100 miles from the Greek mainland Greece Crete
Minoan Civilization The island of Crete had one of the most developed cultures in the Aegean. It was first settled around 6000 BCE. Crete was an important stopping point for the small trading ships in the Mediterranean. Minoan Male Minoan Female
In Greek mythology, Minos was a mythical king of Crete, son of Zeus and Europa.
After his death, Minos became a judge of the dead in Hades. The Minoan civilization has been named after him.
Minos and his brothers were raised by King Asterion of Crete. When Asterion died, Minos claimed his throne and banished his brothers.
It is not clear if “Minos” is a name, or if it was a title, the Cretan word for "king." Scholars have noted the interesting similarity between Minos and the names of other ancient founder-kings, such as Menes of Egypt, Mannus of Germany, Manu of India, and so on.
Difficult to reconcile two conflicting views of Minos:
1. The “good” King Minos, who received the laws of the land from Zeus and ruled justly
2. The “evil” King Minos, who was a tyrant and fed small boys to the Minotaur
Later mythology solves the problem by claiming there were two: Minos I (good) and Minos II (bad).
The Legend of Minos
Minos appears to be a legendary figure, although there is a Palace of Minos in Crete. May have some historical basis.
Literary sources say Minos reigned over Crete and the islands of the Aegean Sea three generations before the Trojan War.
He lived at Knossos for periods of nine years, where he received instruction from Zeus in the legislation which he gave to the island.
He was the author of the Cretan constitution and the founder of its naval supremacy.
Ruins of the Palace of Minos in Crete
The Legend of King Minos
Minos was the son of Zeus and Europa, adopted by the King of Crete. Ascended the throne and struggled against his brothers to maintain his rule.
Appealed to the sea god Poseiden for help, and was sent a snow-white bull as a sign of approval. He was supposed to sacrifice the bull, but kept it for its beauty.
Poseiden was angry, and in punishment caused Mino’s wife to fall in love with the bull.
She built a hollow wooden cow, hid inside of it, and had sex with the bull. The offspring became the Minotaur.
The Minotaur, a monster, half man and half bull, lived in a labyrinth beneath the castle of King Minos (in Knossos?).
Each year, seven boys and seven girls from Athens were given to the Minotaur to eat as human sacrifice.
The Minotaur was finally killed by the Greek hero Theseus, with the help of King Minos’ daughter.
The Minotaur Labyrinth: A maze.
Though the minotaur is only a story, the Minoans had a sport called “bull leaping.” Players had to grab the horns of a bull and flip over the top. This sport was practiced by both men and women. Bull leaping
More on Minos…
Ironically, Mino's son was killed in a bullfight. Outraged, Minos went to Athens to revenge his son, and on the way he camped at Megara.
The king of Megara is, like Sampson of the Old Testiment, said to have received his strength through is long hair. Megara's daughter, Scylla, fell in love with Minos and cut her father's purple hair so Minos could conquer the city.
After his triumph, Minos punished Scylla for her treachery against her father by tying her to a boat and dragging her until she drowned.
More on Minos…
Minos continued his warfare against parts of Greece. On arriving in Attica, he asked Zeus to punish the city, and the god struck it with plague and hunger.
In Athens, an oracle told the Athenians to meet any of Minos' demands if they wanted to escape the revenge.
Minos then asked Athens to send seven boys and seven girls to Crete ever nine years to be sacrificed to the Minotaur.
Minoan ruins were discovered in 1894 by British archaeologist Sir Arthur Evans. He found clay tablets with writing, copper and bronze tools, and the ruins of a great palace at the capital city of Knossos. Knossos Minoan archaeology Knossos
Minoan written language
Minoan written language is referred to as Linear A
Although several objects have been found that contain Linear A, it has never been deciphered
The palace of Knossos was about 3.5 acres* and filled with many rooms, corridors, tunnels and storerooms. *An acre is about ¾ of a football field. The Minoans had highly developed art. The walls of the palace at Knossos are covered in frescos, paintings made in plaster. The frescos contain beautiful and lively scenes. Minoan Fresco Aerial view of Knossos
This fresco shows the Minoan navy at Thera in the Santorini Islands, 16 th century BCE. Minoan frescos showed the life and times of their society. Thera
Minoan trade items The Minoans were craftsman and traders. Gold Seal Minoan Storage Vases They made and sold clay vases, bronze weapons, timber, grapes, olive oil, and metal vases to places as far away as Syria and Sicily.
Arrival in mainland Greece
Culture and language
The Oracle of Delphi
Mycenaean Civilization Mycenae
Mycenaeans entered Greece around 2000 BCE A new group of invaders from the north or east settled in mainland Greece. These people are known as the Mycenaeans. They built walled cities and were organized into small, war-oriented kingdoms. They practiced trade and agriculture. Greece
The Mycenaean civilization lasted from about 1600 to 1200 BCE. Their capital city was named Mycenae. They built large fortresses and citadels. The Lion's Gate is an example of their fortresses. The Mycenaeans built citadels Citadel – A military stronghold used for defense. The Lion’s Gate Air photo of Mycenae.
The walls of the Mycenaean citadels were built with “Cyclopean masonry style.” They used massive stones of irregular shape and size. Cyclopean Masonry Style The king’s palace was located in the highest peak of the citadel. Inside a citadel, note the massive stones
Archeological evidence indicates that the Mycenaeans had a feudal system of government and were ruled by a monarch or king. Mycenaean political system The tombs of kings show that they were extravagant and used wealth to display their power. Plan of Mycenae citadel Mycenaean King
At the top of the hierarchy was the Wanax, or leading king. Beneath him were local chiefs. The leader of the army was called the Lawagetas. The wealth and status of the leaders often came from booty, or spoils of war. Mycenaean hierarchy of power southern wall of the citadel at Mycenae King Local chiefs Army leader
Mycenaean houses were always rectangular. The houses inside the palace were called megaron. Unlike the Minoans, the Mycenaeans were bearded and wore armor in battle. Mycenaean Culture Megaron floor plans Ruins of a Megaron
The main Mycenaean cities were Mycenae, Tiryns, Pylos, Thebes, Orchomenos
The Minoans taught the Mycenaeans written language
Mycenaean language is called Linear B
Archaeologists began attempts to decipher the language in the 1940s, but Michael Ventris is credited with figuring out the code in 1952
Most of the tablets contain bureaucratic documents that provide insight into early Greek culture
All of the Mycenaeans believed in the same gods. Today they are referred to as the Olympian Greek gods. Common Culture Mycenaean writing Zeus, King of the Greek Gods
Mycenaean art was strongly influenced by the Minoans. Mycenaeans painted frescoes with scenes of warfare, armies, and violence. Mycenaean Art Mycenaean Battle Mycenaean Soldiers
The Mycenaeans buried their nobles in beehive (circular) tombs called tholoi . Leaders were often buried with daggers, gold masks, armor, and jeweled weapons. They were buried in a sitting position, and some of the nobility were mummified. Mycenaean Burial Funeral mask Tomb entrance Royal tomb
Another major Bronze Age civilization in the Aegean was Troy. It was located at the Hellespont, today called Dardanelles, a narrow strait of water from the Mediterranean to the Black Sea. According to Greek historians, the Mycenaeans and the Trojans often battled for supremacy of the Aegean Sea. Troy Crete Asia Minor Troy Hellespont Mycenea
Homer wrote the legend of the Trojan War
Homer, a legendary Greek poet, may have lived circa 750 BCE.
He is credited for writing the Iliad (The story of the Trojan War) and the Odyssey ( The Story of Odysseus’ return home ) .
History tells us that Homer was blind and an Ionian Greek.
No one knows for sure if Homer was a real man or a name given to several ancient authors.
circa – around or near
The Trojan War: The Myth
According to Homer, the Trojan War began when the Greek gods Peleus and Thetis forgot to invite Eris, the goddess of discord, to their wedding.
Eris came uninvited and played a trick at the wedding. She threw a golden apple on the banquet table and said that it belonged to the most beautiful goddess at the party.
The goddesses Hera, Athena, and Aphrodite all reached for the apple at the same time.
Zeus, the King of the Gods, decided that Paris, prince of Troy and most handsome human on earth, would decide which of the goddesses was most beautiful.
Discord – absence of agreement
The Trojan War: The Myth
Each goddess offered Paris a prize.
Hera promised power, Athena promised wealth, and Aphrodite promised the most beautiful woman in the world, Helen, wife of Spartan King Menelaus.
Paris chose to have Helen and left for Sparta. While in Sparta, Paris was treated as a royal guest.
However, when Menelaus left Sparta to go to a funeral, Paris captured Helen and took her to Troy to be married.
This occurred around 1200 BCE.
Helen of Troy by Evelyn de Morgan 1898
Menelaus gathered more than a thousand ships under the command Agamemnon and set sail for Troy.
In total, 100,000 men from 28 city states throughout the Greek mainland joined Menelaus to attack Troy.
Achilles, the greatest warrior of the Trojan War, would defy Agamemnon and challenge his authority.
Achilles was known as the warrior of destiny.
Achilles was killed by Paris, the weakest warrior, with an arrow to the heel, his weakest point.
Achilles Death The Trojan War: The Myth Achilles in Armor
Arriving at Troy, Agamemnon sent Odysseus, known for his great speaking abilities, and Menelaus to ask King Priam, Paris’ father, to return Helen. Priam refused. For nine years the Greeks and Trojans fought without either side gaining a victory. The wall surrounding Troy held back the Greek army. The Trojans, led by Hector (brother of Paris), had allies from city-states throughout Asia Minor. Hector was later killed by Achilles. The Trojan War: The Myth Hector’s body returned to Troy.
ASIA MINOR TROY Sparta Peloponnesus Ithica
The Trojan Horse
Odysseus was a clever warrior.
He ordered a large wooden horse to be built.
The horse was made hollow so that soldiers could hide inside.
The Greek fleet sailed away to a hidden harbor and waited.
The Trojans believed that the Greeks had given up the war and left the horse as a gift for surrender.
The Trojans brought the hollow horse inside the city.
That night Odysseus and his men climbed out of the horse, signaled the fleet in hiding and opened the gates of Troy.
The Greek soldiers invaded Troy as the Trojan soldiers slept.
All males, including infants, were killed; all females taken as slaves, and all of Troy’s treasures taken as booty.
The city was completely demolished.
The Trojan War: The Myth
For thousands of years Troy was a legend. However, using clues from the Iliad, an amateur archaeologist named Heinrich Schliemann discovered the location of Troy at Hisarlik, Turkey in 1871. Troy: the archaeologist’s story Ruins of ancient Troy Heinrich Schliemann
In total, there were nine cities built at the location of Troy, each on top of the other.
The sixth city is the most grand and resembles the Troy in Homer’s Iliad, but it was destroyed by an earthquake, not by war, in 1250 BCE.
The seventh layer of the city appears to be the legendary Troy and has been dated to 1180 BCE.
Its towers and walls can still be seen in the ruins and there are arrowheads lying in the streets.
The Nine Cities of Troy Troy, archeological ruins of two small walls.
Dating back to 1400 BCE, the Oracle of Delphi was the most important shrine in all of Greece. All Greek leaders would consult the priestess oracle on all major decisions of state. The Oracle of Apollo at Delphi
Delphi was built at a sacred spring on the slopes of Mt Parnassus
It was called the omphalos (navel) of the world. People came from all over the Aegean to ask the oracle questions about their fate.
The oracle was a priestess called “Pythia” (also named Sybil).
The priestesses claimed to be the voice of the god Apollo.
Pythia at Delphi
Oracle of Apollo at Delphi
Due to her power to prophecy, she held unusual power for a woman in Greece
Last recorded response given in 393 B.C., when Theodosis I closed pagan temples
At first, well educated upper class women were chosen to be Pythia. Later, this changed to peasant women
Oracle of Apollo at Delphi
Pythias appeared to have a shortened life span, which Greeks attributed to service to the God.
Some modern scholars have attributed this to the lifestyle, and possibly a volcanic vent which may have put sulfer and ethylene
The Greek Dark Age
The Doric Order of Architecture
Ancient Greece during the Greek Dark Age
The Mycenaean city-states became weak from constant warfare. In 1150 BCE, the Dorians from southwestern Macedonia, invaded the Mycenaean city-states. Around 1100 BCE Mycenaean civilization collapsed. The Dorians from Southwestern Macedonia Macedonia in green Location of Dorians
Began with the Dorian invasions about 1100 BCE.
For 400 years, civilization collapsed in the eastern Mediterranean.
Many Mycenean cities were destroyed or abandoned, like Sparta, Olympia, and Corinth.
People lived in sedentary or nomadic tribal groups.
Pottery was made with simple designs.
The population declined.
The great cultures lost contact with each other.
The Greek Dark Age
Hittites Region affected during Greek Dark Age
According to Greek mythology, the Dorian people originated from Dorus, the son of Hellen, the patriarch of the Hellenes, or ancient Greeks.
The Dorians typically controlled or enslaved the people they conquered.
There is no written record of the Dorians and most of what we know comes from the burned ruins of conquered cities and ancient Greek legends.
The Dorian mode is the same as playing all of the white notes of a piano from E to E: E F G A | B C D E. The Dorian Mode was used for reciting poems. The most noteworthy contributions of the Dorians to Greek civilization were in music, poetry and architecture. Dorian Mode of Music
The Doric order was the earliest form of Greek architecture around 700 BCE.
Greek architecture is best seen in the style of columns.
The Doric column was used to support most buildings in ancient Greece.
The Doric column has no base.
At the top of the column is a simple capitol.
The Doric Order of Architecture Capitol Base
The Archaic Period
Emergence of city-states
Oligarchies and democracies
Ionic Order architecture
The period generally known as Ancient Greece began around the first Olympic games in 776 BCE.
It marks the end of the Greek Dark Ages.
This is the time of the great Greek city-states of Athens and Sparta.
It is also known as the Archaic Period.
750-500 BCE Emergence of city-states Greek city-states, called polis, developed self-rule. The English word "politics" comes from the Greek polis. City-states represent the single, greatest political achievement of Greece
The Greek City State
The tribal or clan units of the dark ages slowly grew into larger political units at the end of Archaic period
Beginning around 800 BC, trade began to dramatically accelerate between the peoples of Greece.
Marketplaces grew up in Greek villages
Communities began to gather together into large defensive units, building fortifications to use in common.
On this foundation, the Greek-speaking people who lived on the Greek peninsula, the mainland, and the coast of Asia Minor, developed political units that were centrally based on a single city .
The Greek City-State
These city-states were independent states that controlled a limited amount of territory surrounding the state.
The largest of the city-states was the Dorian polis named Sparta.
Sparta controlled more than 3000 square miles of surrounding territory.
Each city-state was unique, although they shared some characteristics
Small size allowed for political experimentation
Each city-state developed a unique culture and system of government.
The city-states were also made up of different groups of people, such as the Dorian, Ionian, Mycenaean, and Achaean people.
Characteristics of City-States All of the city-states spoke Greek.
Evolution of City-States
All Greek cities-states started as monarchies, or rule by a single king
In their earliest stages, they were ruled by a basileus , or hereditary king.
The Greeks living in those city-states soon tired of the kings, many of which were overthrown in the eighth century BC.
A variety of political alternatives were experimented with in place of the basileus : these included oligarchy, timocracy, tyranny, and democracy . Mosaic depicting the basileus Alexander the Great
Evolution of the City-States
The most common form of government in the Greek city-states was oligarchy , or "rule by a few."
Oligarchs were almost always drawn from the noble classes or from the wealthiest citizens of the state ("rule by the wealthy" is called a timocracy ),
Depending on the city-state, oligarchs could be chosen by lot, elected, or rotated power among members of a certain class.
Oligarchs most often ruled absolutely; they had many of the powers granted to a king.
In some places like Sparta and Athens, oligarchies ruled in conjunction with other political structures such as a council, and/or a democratic assembly.
Evolution of the City-State
The Greek tyrants were often swept into power by dissatisfaction or crisis; they were usually popular leaders when they assumed power.
They often assumed absolute control in the name of reforming the government;
Once in power, they ruled as a king would rule, and many attempted, and some succeeded, to make the tyrrany hereditary—in essence, a form of monarchy.
They maintained power only by their hold on military force and often fear.
The tyranies were by nature highly unstable, and they fell apart rapidly. By the 6 th century B.C., political alternatives were considered
Evolution of the City-State
Tyranny of oligarchies never died out, but several were replaced by a second alternative that originated sometime in the 6th century: democracy .
The word means, "rule by the demos (people),"
Greek democracies looked nothing like modern democracies.
Greek democracies were not representative governments, they were governments run by the free, male citizens of the city-state.
All the members of a city-state were not involved in the government: slaves, foreigners, and women were all disbarred from the democracy.
In reality, the democratic city-states more closely resembled oligarchies for a minority ruled the state
Greek Citizenship in the Polis
The Greek city-states determined citizenship by descent.
Greeks still had a fundamental and working sense of kinship relationships and tribal organization.
Most cities demanded that its citizens be able to demonstrate descent from one parent (sometimes both in Athens) who was a citizen;
Every once in a while, the administration of a polis would admit people into the citizenship who could not demonstrate descent from a citizen, that is, the polis allowed for naturalization .
Naturalization was a brand new concept in the ancient world, and contributed to the Greek sense during the Hellenistic Age that Greek culture was or could be a universal culture.
Athens & Sparta
Athens & Sparta
Sparta and Athens were two of the most prominent city-states in Ancient Greece.
Athens was renowned as a center of wisdom and learning. The people of Athens were interested in arts, music, and intellectual pursuits.
Sparta was recognized for its military strength. A Spartan's life was centered on the state, because he lived and died to serve the state.
Although the competing city states of Sparta and Athens were different in many ways, they both managed to become dominating powers in Ancient Greece.
Rise of Athens
The area around Athens has been inhabited since Neolithic times
By 1400 BC the settlement had become an important center of the Mycenaean civilization.
Unlike other Mycenaean centers, Athens was not sacked and abandoned at the time of the Doric invasion of about 1200 BC, and the Athenians always maintained that they were "pure" Ionians with no Doric element.
However, Athens lost most of its power and probably dwindled to a small hill fortress once again.
Rise of Athens
By the 9th century BC Athens had re-emerged.
Athens’ central location in the Greek world, its secure stronghold on the Acropolis and its access to the sea, gave it a natural advantage over potential rivals such as Thebes and Sparta.
From early in the 1st millennium, Athens was a sovereign city-state, ruled at first by kings.
Rise of Athens
During this period Athens succeeded in bringing the other towns around it.
This process created the largest and wealthiest state on the Greek mainland, but it also created a larger class of people excluded from political life by the nobility.
By the 7th century BC social unrest had become widespread, and the Athenian court of justice appointed a leader named Draco to draft a strict new lawcode (hence "draconian").
When this failed, they appointed Solon , with a mandate to create a new constitution.
Solon’s Reforms in Athens
In 594 B.C., seven years before the Babylonians destroyed Solomon's Temple and took the Israelites into captivity, Athens became a democracy under the rule of Solon
In addition to eliminating serfdom, Solon altered the stringent laws of Draco, making murder the only crime punishable by death.
Under the democracy, Athens entered its golden age, becoming a center of wisdom and learning.
Population of Athens
By 431 BC, Athens had become the most populous city-state in Hellas. Some historians estimate the population to be as high as 300,000* at that time.
30,000 male citizens
46,000 non-citizen hired laborers
110,000 women and children
In 471 BC, scholars believe the approximate population within the actual walls of Athens was 140,000;
Approximately 40,000 men were citizens;
Approximately 40,000 were slaves.
The rest were women, children and slaves
*The Population of Ancient Athens - A.W.Gomme - 1933 for the year 431 B.C.
Athens was a limited democracy, ruled by all of its male citizens. Women did not participate in politics at all.
Athens had elected officials including 10 generals (strategos), magistrates (archons), and others.
A Council of 500 had both executive and administrative control. Members of this Council were chosen by lot every year, 10 from each of the 50 tribes
Any male citizen over the age of thirty was eligible to be chosen.
An Assembly , made up of all male citizens, had veto power over the Council. In addition, the Assembly was the only branch of the government which could declare war.
A soldier's rank was decided by his social or economic status before he entered the army.
Instituted by Solon in the 6th century B.C., four classes made up the Athenian social ladder. Defined by income, each class had a certain measure of political responsibility:
The wealthiest class, called the " five-hundred-bushel men ", supplied the army with leaders.
Called the hippeis or "horsemen", the second class made up the Athenian cavalry.
The third class, called the zeugitai , made up the foot soldier, or hoplite section of the army.
the poorest class, called the thetes , served either as oarsmen for the Athenian fleet, or as archers on land.
In addition, while Spartan soldiers trained for thirteen years, Athenian soldiers only trained for two years.
Athenian military status was predetermined by the soldier's social class
Because of the city’s proximity to the sea, Athens was known for its superior navy and navel strength
Athenian Social Structure
Freemen were all male citizens: divided into numerous classes: at the top were aristocrats who had large estates and made up the cavalry or captained triremes; middle ranks were small farmers ; lowest class was the thetes (urban craftsmen and trireme rowers).
Metics - those who came from outside the city; they were not allowed to own land, but could run industries and businesses.
Slaves were lowest class, but less harshly treated than in most other Greek cities. Slaves had no rights, and an owner could kill a slave. Slaves varied in status: some were given important roles in Athens, like policemen.
Women were rarely seen outside the home and had no rights in the Athenian democracy.
Athenian Cultural Values
Democratic values for citizens. They believed in participation in government as a civic responsibility.
Athenians believed in their cultural superiority and in their role in an empire and benefiting from trade.
Cultural legacy includes art, architecture, drama and literature, philosophy, science, medicine, and government (democracy, trial by jury)
Schools taught reading, writing and mathematics, music, poetry, sport and gymnastics.
Based upon their birth and the wealth of their parents, the length of education was from the age of 5 to 14, for the wealthier 5 - 18 and sometimes into a student's mid-twenties in an academy where they would also study philosophy, ethics, and rhetoric (the skill of persuasive public speaking).
Finally, the citizen boys entered a military training camp for two years, until the age of twenty.
Foreign metics and slaves were not expected to attain anything but a basic education in Greece, but were not excluded from it either.
Girls received little formal education (except perhaps in the aristocrats' homes through tutors);
They were generally kept at home and had no political power in Athens
The education of a girl involved spinning, weaving, and other domestic art.
Athenian women and girls were kept at home with no participation in sports or politics.
Wives were considered property of their husbands. They were were responsible for spinning, weaving and other domestic arts.
Some women held high posts in the ritual events and
religious life of Athens
Prostitutes and courtesans were not confined to the
house. Some became influential
The Greek alphabet began with the Minoan Linear A script. By 900 BCE, Linear B used by the Mycenaeans, became the first true alphabet. The Greek alphabet had a symbol for each vowel and consonant. It is the oldest alphabetic script in use today. Greek: The first complete alphabet Linear A script Phoenician alphabet Though the Phoenician alphabet is usually considered the first alphabet, it does not have symbols for vowel sounds.
Athens Acropolis Parthenon Old Temple of Athena Theatre Complex
The Greek Alphabet
There are many gods in Greek mythology. The Greeks believed that the gods lived on Mount Olympus. The Greek Pantheon of Gods Summit of Mt Olympus The Olympian Gods Mount Olympus Athens
Zeus: king of the gods, god of sky and thunder.
Hera: wife and sister of Zeus and goddess of marriage.
Poseidon: god of the sea.
Ares: god of war.
Hermes: the messenger of the gods, was also the god of orators, literature and poets.
Hephaestus: god of blacksmiths, craftsmen and artisans.
Aphrodite: goddess of love.
Athena: goddess of wisdom, strategy, and war.
Apollo: god of the sun.
Artemis: goddess of the moon and hunting.
Hestia: goddess of the hearth and the family.
Demeter: goddess of agriculture.
Dionysus: god of wine, civilization and peace.
Hades: god of the underworld.
Persephone: goddess of the underworld.
The Greek Gods of Olympus
The Muses The Muses are Greek goddesses who help humans with arts and sciences. They were thought to inspire people to greatness. The Muses were the daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne ("memory").
The First Olympic games, 776 BCE According to Greek mythology, the Olympic games began in 776 BCE, as a treaty between three city-states. They agreed not to make war during the time of the games. The winner of the games was given a wreath made out of an olive branch from Zeus’ sacred forest. Olive Branch Olympic Running Chariot Racing
The Olympics were held every four years during July or August. The first Olympics lasted only one day with one contest, the running of one Stadion (about 200 yards). There were 10 events: running, the pentathlon, jumping, discus, javelin, wrestling, boxing, the pancration (combination boxing-wrestling), chariot racing, and horse racing. All Greeks who were free citizens and had not committed murder or heresy had the right to take part in the Olympic Games. Women could not participate or even watch the games. However, they could own the race horses. By 5 BCE, the games lasted five days. Boxing
All of the Greek city-states began as monarchies and were ruled by a hereditary king.
Over time, the merchants and craftsmen became powerful and took control of the city-states.
The government changed to become an oligarchy (rule by a few).
City-state government Sometimes the citizens revolted against the oligarchy. They would be led by a "tyrant." In ancient Greece, the word had a different meaning than today. A tyrant was anyone who overturned the established government of a city-state.
By 700 BCE, the city states were ruled by two forms of government: oligarchies (rule by a few) and democracies.
Democracy means "rule by the demos” (people).
In some city states of Ancient Greece every citizen could participate directly in every decision.
Only free men who had never committed a murder were citizens.
Slaves, foreigners, and women were not allowed to participate in the democratic government.
Oligarchies and Democracies
A colony is a territory controlled by another country.
Ancient Greeks colonized areas throughout the Aegean Sea and into the Ionian and Adriatic Seas, all the way to Italy and Sicily.
The colonies were used for trading with the mother city.
735-700 BCE – The First Greek Colonies in Sicily
Ancient Greeks began to colonize Sicily around 800 BCE.
They inter-married with the local people.
The name Sicily comes from one of the original inhabitants, the Sicels.
Syracuse became the most powerful of the Greek cities on Sicily.
The Ionians were the first to colonize Sicily in 735 BCE at Naxos. Syracuse was founded by the Corinthians. Megara was founded by the people of Megara, Greece. Gela was founded by immigrants from Rhodes and Crete. Sicily Gela Syracuse . Megara . Naxos
The colonies spread Greek language and culture throughout the Mediterranean. Many city-states became powerful from controlling their colonies, especially Ephesus, Corinth, Argos, and Miletus. However, the two greatest city-states were the rivals Athens and Sparta. Argos
The Ionic order is one of the three styles of Greek architecture, along with the Doric and Corinthian. The columns of Ionic order usually stand on a base separating the shaft of the column from the platform. The capital of the Ionic column have paired, spiraling volutes that look like scrolls. Ionic Order Architecture Volutes Base Platform Shaft
The myth of Sparta
Lykurgos of Sparta
The Messenian War
The nine lyric poets of Classical Greece
Sparta conquered Peloponnesus
Ancient Sparta SPARTA Eurotas Valley
The Myth of Sparta
It is said that Sparta was founded by Lacedaemon, son of Zeus married Sparta , the daughter of Eurotas ( A river god).
Legends of Homer tells us that Sparta was originally named Lacedemon.
The Dorians, later called the Spartans, conquered the Eurotas Valley around 1100 BCE. They were sculptors in wood, potters, metal workers, weavers, leather workers, musicians, dancers and singers. They were famous throughout Ancient Greece. This changed in the 6 th century with the constitution of Lykurgos. Eurotas River Sparta had Dorian origins
Lykurgos was born around 700 BCE, the son of the Spartan king Eumenos.
Before succeeding his father, Lykurgos traveled through the known world searching for new ideas.
Back in Greece, he went to the Oracle of Delphi to ask if he could rule with his new ideas.
The oracle told him that he " was more God than man ".
He went home to Sparta to change the way they lived.
Lykurgos of Sparta Lykurgos
The story is told Lykurgos bred two small puppies.
One he kept indoors and gave the puppy plenty of food and play.
The other puppy he trained outdoors for hunting.
He showed the Spartans the two puppies. One puppy could do nothing but play while the trained puppy could hunt for food.
How Lykurgos changed the Spartans Lykurgos gave the Spartans a new constitution that made Sparta a military state. Loyalty was the most important quality of a Spartan. Training for the state began at birth. Weak children, both male and female, were left on nearby hills to die.
At the age of seven, every male Spartan was sent to military school.
Boys were taught discipline, survival skills and how to endure pain.
At the age of 20, all Spartan males became soldier.
They lived in barracks and ate all meals together until the age of 30.
Spartan soldiers were reserve soldiers until the age of 60.
All Greeks admired the Spartan discipline and morality.
Today we call someone "Spartan" when they live with discipline and without luxury.
Spartan women were taught to be obedient to the state, gymnastics and exercise.
Spartan women had much more freedom than Greek women that lived in other city-states.
They were allowed to move about freely and were not expected to stay inside the house like women in Athens.
Spartan Females Spartan women
The Spartan marriage ceremony included the ritual of the husband literally carrying off his wife at the end of the wedding.
Since males lived in the barracks until the age of 30, it is believed that the soldier had to escape to court his wife-to-be.
At the age of 30, a Spartan male could live with his wife and family.
Each Spartan soldier was given land with a Helot slave farmer.
The Helot was required to feed the Spartan family.
Spartan Marriage A Spartan woman and her slave.
At the top was the Spartiate, or native Spartan. They served in the army and were citizens.
The next class was foreigners, called the Perioeci. They were businessmen who had personal freedom but were not citizens.
At the bottom were the Helots. They were Peloponnesian Greeks who had been conquered and made slaves by the Spartans.
Spartan society was divided into three classes Spartan chariot Spartiate Perioeci Helots
Sparta had the most stable government in the history of ancient Greece.
At the top was a dual monarchy made up of two kings.
Below the monarchy was a council of 28 nobles who were retired military commanders over 60 years of age.
Next was a group of five men known as the Ephorate. These men controlled the assembly.
Decisions were made by a democratic assembly of all free males over 30.
Spartan General Spartan government
These were the nine poets considered by Classical Greeks to be worthy of academic study. Two were from Sparta:
Alcman (choral lyric, 7th cent. BCE) -SPARTA
Sappho (monodic lyric, c. 600 BCE)
Alcaeus (monodic lyric, c. 600 BCE)
Anacreon (monodic lyric, 6th cent. BCE)
Stesichorus (choral lyric, 6th cent. BCE)
Ibycus (choral lyric, 6th cent. BCE)
Simonides (choral lyric, 5th cent. BCE) - SPARTA
Pindar (choral lyric, 5th cent. BCE)
Bacchylides (choral lyric, 5th cent. BCE)
The Nine Lyric Poets of Classical Greece
Alcman was the most important lyric poet of Sparta.
He began his life as a slave.
His poetry was so impressive that he was emancipated.
His poetry was filled with verses about love and wine.
“ There is such a thing as the vengeance of the gods: that man is blessed who devoutly weaves to the end the web of his day unweeping. And so I sing of the brightness of Agido: I see her like the sun, which Agido summons to shine on us as our witness” - Alcman Alcman, greatest Lyric Poet of Sparta
Simodides wrote poems about Spartan life: Simonides - One of the nine Lyric Poets
“ These men left an altar of glory on their land, shining in all weather, when they were enveloped by the black mists of death.
but although they died they are not dead,
for their courage raises them in glory
from the rooms of Hell.
Their tomb is an altar on which stands our bowls of remembrance and the wine of our praise. Neither mold nor worms, nor time which destroys all things, will blacken their deaths. The shrine of these brave men has found its guardian in the glory of Greece. Leonidas, the Spartan King, lives in the great ornament he left behind of unending fame and virtue.”
By 500 BCE Sparta had conquered almost all of the surrounding territory and dominated the Peloponnesus region of southwest Greece. Sparta conquered Peloponnesus Satellite photo of the Peloponnesus Sparta
Athens was Ionian
Peisistratus makes social reforms
Panathenaic festivals established
Athens is conquered by Sparta
Athens expels Sparta
Athens was inhabited by Ionians since Neolithic times, around 4000 BCE.
By 1400 BCE, Athens became a powerful Mycenaean city.
Athens was not conquered by the Dorians.
The Athenians kept their Ionian culture.
By the end of the Greek Dark Ages the king of Athens was replaced by a council of nobles called the Areopagus.
The council was made up of wealthy landowners.
They met on a hill near Athens called Areopagus, which is how they got their name.
By the 8th century BCE, the Areopagus replaced the king and created a council of nine archons (rulers) to lead Athens.
Areopagus The Areopagus
At the top was the wealthy Areopagus who owned vineyards and olive groves.
The middle class was made of merchants, craftsmen, and foreigners.
The poor class was made of wheat farmers.
Athens also had slaves.
Wheat farmers lived on poor soils and earned little money.
Slaves came from the families of the wheat farmers who would sell their children into slavery to pay their debts.
Wealthy Athenian Athenian society was complex
Unlike Sparta, Athens developed an open and democratic society. Athens was founded on fertile, agricultural land adjacent to a safe harbor on the Mediterranean. The rulers of Athens did not make war on their neighbors to dominate their lands. Instead, Athenians sought out a life of individual pursuits and fulfillment. Athens from Space - NASA
By 549 BCE the poverty in Athens became unbearable.
To prevent a peasant revolt, the Areopagus turned over all power to a single man, Solon.
He became Athens's first benevolent despot.
Solon had absolute power but was given it to do only good things.
Solon immediately began making social and governmental reforms in Athens.
Solon Benevolent: good deeds
Solon changed the government
Solon’s first act was to cancel almost all public debts and free many Athenian’s from debt slavery.
He outlawed slavery as a form of collateral for future debts.
Solon changed the government so all Athenians could participate.
The wealthy continued to control the city through the Areopagus.
The middle class of merchants and craftsmen were given power through a new council of 400 men.
Solon on the Nebraska capital building The council met on Pnyx hill, near the Acropolis.
Solon Created a General Assembly
Solon created a general assembly of the poor called the Thetes.
Any member of the poor class could vote on laws and decisions passed by the Council of 400.
The assembly also participated in Athens judicial court system.
From these reforms, Athens had a system of checks and balances between the three governmental bodies of the Areopagus, the Council of 400, and the assembly of Thetes.
Athens archeological site
The ancient Athenian court system had two legal codes, the Draconian and the Solonian Codes of Law.
Draconian law was named after Dracon, a lawgiver.
The punishment for all offenses was death.
No matter how small the crime, Dracon believed a person who broke the law should die.
Today we call cruel and harsh laws Draconian.
Draconian Law Dracon
Solon got rid of all the Draconian laws except those involving murder.
There were two types Solonian Law, private and public.
Private cases involved disagreements between individuals, usually over property.
Public cases involved crimes against the state, such as treason, bribery, and theft of public funds.
Solon abolished Draconian laws Solon
Examples of Athenian laws 1) Men were forbidden to talk evil of the dead. 2) If a man couldn’t find water within a certain distance from his house he was permitted to use his neighbor’s well. 3) For agricultural products, only oil could be exported.
Peisistratus came into power through a popular revolt.
He made many cultural reforms in Athens.
He encouraged the arts and poetry.
Also, to protect his own authority, he strengthened the power of the assembly and the courts of the poor.
Peisistratus (center) Solon was followed by a tyrant named Peisistratus.
Peisistratus introduced major new festivals, including the Panathenaic (All of Athens) Festival. He started the “City Dionysia”, the first known drama competitions. He also changed the economy by giving farmers loans to grow olives. Olives can be sold for many uses including cooking oil, lubricant, cleanser and even fuel. Athens became a major exporter of olive products. This led to a demand for more pots to transport the olives and so they became pottery exporters also. Athena olives Harvesting Olives
Panathenaic Festival, 566 BCE
Musical and poetry contests
Pannychos (Night time ritual dancing)
The Panathenaea parade
Sacrifices to Athena
Apobatês (A chariot and running race)
Panathenaic procession The all-Athenian festival was the most important. The festival took place in the middle of July and was a celebration of Athena's birthday. During the festival there were:
Athenian pottery became popular throughout the Aegean. The most famous of the Athenian potters was Exekias, circa 550-525 BCE. He was a potter, a vase painter and a master of the black-figure style. His best known surviving work is a vase showing the Greek heroes of the Trojan War, Ajax and Achilles, playing dice. Dionysus and dolphins Ajax and Achilles Athenian Pottery
Sparta conquered Athens
Peisistratus died in 527 BCE.
Peisistratus was followed by his son, Hippias. However, Hippias was not a strong leader and had many enemies.
These enemies helped the Spartans attack Athens.
The Spartan king Cleomenes I conquered Athens in 510 BCE.
Hippias was banished to Persia.
Spartan Hoplite Spartan Cavalry
The Spartans made Isagorus the ruler of Athens around 510 BCE.
His first action was to remove citizenship from all Athenians who could not trace their family back to the original four tribes.
He was challenged by Cleisthenes, but Isagorus expelled him and 700 families from Athens.
Cleisthenes returned three years later in 507 BCE with the 700 families and began a riot.
In the end, Sparta called a truce and left Athens.
Isagorus and his followers were executed.
Cleisthenes was asked by the people of Athens to organize a democratic government called the demos.
Today we call this democracy.
Athens starts the Demos
Cleisthenes made many political changes in Athens. His most important act was to give citizenship to all free men living in Athens. He named ten new tribes to share power more fairly. The ten tribes were given their names by the Oracle of Delphi after ten mythical heroes. Cleisthenes: citizenship to all free men in Athens I Erechtheis II Aigeis II Pandionis IV Leontis V Akamantis VI Oineis VII Kekropis VIII Hippothontis IX Aiantis X Antiochis Acropolis
Cleisthenes created a new democratic council with 500 members called the Boule, Greek for council.
They were chosen by lot from each of the ten tribes.
Each member served for only one year and was over 30 years old.
A large, square building with wooden benches was constructed to hold meetings for the Boule called the bouleuterion.
Cleisthenes continued to support the popular assembly of all male citizens.
The assembly could veto the council and only the assembly could declare war.
Inside the Boule Cleisthenes established a new Council Inside the Boule
The reforms of Cleisthenes strengthened and stabilized Athenian democracy.
By 490 BCE, Athens was the leader of the Greek city-states.
In 487 BCE, the Assembly had the power to ostracize a citizen.
Ostracism was the act of expelling (putting in exile) a citizen from Athens for ten years.
It was used to protect Athens from rebels who tried to become tyrants.
Citizens would write the name of a the person to be exiled on a potsherd (broken piece of pottery).
This was called an ostrakon.
It took over 6,000 ostrakon to ostracize a citizen.
Ostracism Ostrakon used in banishments
The Corinthian order
The city of Corinth is located on an isthmus between southern and northern Greece. It is between the eastern and western halves of Greece. There were two main ports, one in the Corinthian Gulf called Lechaion and in the Saronic Gulf called Kenchreai. Both ports had a navy to protect Corinth and its colonies. Corinth had two ports Isthmus: A narrow strip of land, surrounded on two sides by water, connecting two larger land areas.
Corinth: The Myth
Corinth was founded in the Neolithic Age, circa 6000 BCE.
According to one myth, the city was founded by Corinthos, a descendant of the god Helios (the Sun).
Other myths say that it was founded by the goddess Ephyra, a daughter of the titan Oceanus, giving it the ancient name of the city called Ephyra.
Wealthy Corinthians maintained a large army of Hoplites. Hoplites – Greek infantry citizen soldiers Corinthian Hoplite Helmet
The Corinthians were led by many wealthy tyrants.
Periander was one of the Seven Sages of Greece.
He introduced coined money in Corinth.
He also began building a canal to connect the two gulfs, but instead built a ramp.
The Corinthians had many colonies throughout the Mediterranean world.
Today these colonies are known as: Syracuse, Lefkas, Corfu, Durres and Fier in Albania, and the Greek colony of Naucratis in Egypt.
The Corinthians were led by many tyrants Corinthian coin of Aphrodite
Corinth was known for its black figure pottery, glass jars, perfumed wine, and furs. The Corinthians exported pottery throughout the Aegean. The pottery was designed in “black figure technique” with figures drawn as silhouettes. Animal figures were typical on Corinthian pottery. Corinthian Pottery
The Corinthian order of classical architecture was more complex than the Ionic and Doric styles.
Like the Ionic order, the capital had a scrolling volute, but it was highly decorated.
The Corinthian Order
There was a famous saying in the Aegean: "Ou pantos plein es Korinthon", which translates as "Not everyone is able to go to Corinth." Corinth was a place of great wealth and high prices. Corinthian silver coin Corinth was very wealthy The Corinth Canal, started by Periander, was completed in 1893.
Archaic Poets and Philosophers
The Seven Sages of Greece
Thespis - The First Actor
The Seven Sages of Greece were considered to be men of exceptional wisdom. They are remembered by the following maxims: The Seven Sages of Greece Sage – A wise person Maxim – A wise saying
Solon of Athens - "Nothing in excess"
Chilon of Sparta - "Know thyself"
Thales of Miletus - "To bring surety brings ruin"
Bias of Priene - "Too many workers spoil the work"
Cleobulus of Lindos - "Moderation is the chief good"
Pittacus of Mitylene - "Know thine opportunity"
Periander of Corinth - "Forethought in all things"
Bias of Priene
Sappho was an ancient Greek lyric poetess from the city of Eressos on the island of Lesbos.
She was born sometime in the beginning of the 7th century BCE.
Sappho was one of the nine lyrical poets of Ancient Greece.
In spring Cydonian apple-trees, Watered by fountains ever flowing Through crofts unmown of maiden goddesses, And young vines, 'neath the shade Of shooting tendrils, tranquilly are growing. Meanwhile for me Love never laid In slumber, like a north-wind glowing With Thracian lightnings, still doth dart Blood-parching madness on my heart, From Kupris hurtling, stormful, wild, Lording the man as erst the child. Poetry of Sappho:
Pindar was born in Thebes in 522 BCE. He is considered the greatest of the nine lyric poets of ancient Greece. Pindar composed choral songs and odes.
And when a man… having done fair deeds with no poet to sing of them, hath come to the hall of Death, All his high hopes are barren,
And with all his toil he hath won but a scanty measure of delight.
The great mind of God piloteth the course of the guardian spirit of the men he loves
Tis by impuluse divine, oh Apollo, that man's achievement from its beginning to its close waxeth sweet.
Quotes from Pindar: Pindar
Aesop was born a slave sometime in the 6 th century BCE.
His masters, Xanthus and Iadmon, gave him freedom as a reward for his humor and intellect.
He traveled to Lydia where he became a public defendant (lawyer) and story teller.
King Croesus heard of Aesop and invited him to live at his palace. There he met Solon and all Seven Sages of Greece.
His stories were collected in the 14th century by a monk named Maximus Planudes.
Today they are known as “Aesop’s Fables.”
Artists renderings of Aesop Aesop’s Fables
A Rose and an Amaranth blossomed side by side in a garden, and the Amaranth said to her neighbor, "How I envy you, your beauty and your sweet scent! No wonder you are such a universal favorite." But the Rose replied with a shade of sadness in her voice, "Ah, my dear friend, I bloom but for a time: my petals soon wither and fall, and then I die. But your flowers never fade, even if they are cut; for they are everlasting." "Greatness carries its own penalties." The Rose and the Amaranth by Aesop
Anaximander Anaximander, 610-546 BCE, is credited with making the first maps of the sky and the known world. Anaximander’s universe showed the earth surrounded by rings of fire. Anaximander’s world
Drama began in ancient Athens when poets sang hymns to the God of wine, Dionysus.
When Pisistratus made the “City Dionysi”, these hymns would be sung by singers dressed in masks and costumes.
A Greek legend tells us of a wandering bard called Thespis.
According to legend, circa 535 BCE, Thespis acted out his poems on a wooden cart pretending to be the actual character.
Today Thespis is known as the world's first actor.
Actors are also known as “thespians.”
Thespis - The First Actor
The Persian Wars
Map of Persian Empire
Persian Naval Disaster
The Battle at Marathon
The Battle at Salamis
The Battle at Mycale
The Battle of Plataea
Aeschylus' play "The Persians“
During the Classical Period, literature, artwork, architecture, philosophy, and politics flourished. Athens was the leader of Greek culture throughout the Mediterranean. There were also many great wars including the Persian Wars and the Peloponnesian Wars. Classical Greek Period, 500-323 BCE The Acropolis
Herodotus, 5 BCE
Herodotus of Halicarnassus was the world's first historian.
He wrote 9 books and called the collection "Historie."
This ancient Greek word means "to inquire" or "to ask."
During Roman times it evolved into the word we use today for HISTORY.
Almost everything we know about the ancient Persians was written by Herodotus.
Persian conquest of the Lydians, 546 BCE Around 560 BCE, King Croesus of Lydia conquered the Greek colonies of Asia Minor. The Lydians shared the customs, language and values of the Ionian Greeks and there was general peace. But in 546 BCE, the Persians defeated the Lydians and took over all of their Greek colonies. The Persians set up their own tyrants in each of the Greek city-states. They also collected high taxes and made military service mandatory to all of the inhabitants. Croesus
By 500 BCE, all of Asia Minor was under the rule of a Persian satrap, or governor.
The satrap set up his capital in Sardis, the former capital of Lydia.
The Persians generally left alone cities who paid their taxes and followed the law.
In 499 BCE the tyrant of Miletus, Aristagoras, began a rebellion against Persian Rule.
Athens sent 20 war ships to aid in his revolt.
In 498 BCE the Athenians conquered and burned Sardis.
Called the Ionian Revolt, all of the Greek cities in Asia Minor revolted against the Persians.
The Ionian Revolt Ruins of the temple to Artemis at Sardis
The Athenians quickly lost interest in the war and withdrew their soldiers and ships from Asia Minor. The Persians, under King Darius I (521-486 BCE), regained control of all of the cities by 495 BCE. Darius decided to punish the Ionians for the six year revolt by resettling many of them into Persia.
Persian War, 499-479 BCE In the 5 th century BCE, the Persian Empire, the largest known at the time, attempted to conquer Greece. The battles, called the Persian Wars, lasted 20 years.
In 492 BCE, Darius I sent an army on 600 ships across the Hellespont.
A sudden storm destroyed half his ships and killed many of his soldiers at Mount Athos on the Macedonian coast.
His invasion plans were ruined.
Monastery Simonos Petra on the cliffs of Mt. Athos Persian naval disaster at Mt. Athos King Darius I
Two years later Darius sent a new fleet of 600 ships.
This time his powerful triremes crossed the Aegean Sea and arrived safely off Attica, the part of Greece that surrounds the city of Athens.
T he 20,000 soldiers and 800 cavalry invaded at the plain of Marathon, about 25 miles (40 kilometers) from Athens.
Persians arrived at Marathon
Darius demanded the Greeks surrender immediately.
However, the Athenians were not scared of the superior force.
They sent a swift runner, Pheidippides, to ask Sparta for aid, but the Spartans, were conducting a religious festival and refused to join the battle until the moon was full.
King Darius demanded Greek submission The Olympic Marathon race commemorates Pheidippides heroic run.
Battles of the Persian War
The Athenian Hoplite soldiers were outnumbered by the Persians 2:1.
The Greeks relied upon the leadership of General Miltiades, who had served in the Persian army.
Facing Persian archers, Miltiades arranged his men so he had fewer in the middle and his greatest strength on the sides.
According to Herodotus, the Persians lost 6,400 men against only 192 on the Greek side.
Miltiades Battle at Marathon, 490 BCE Persian Soldier Greek Spearmen
After the Battle at Marathon, Themistocles, an Athenian general and politician, persuaded Athens to build a navy. Themistocles Tireme In one year, the Athenians built two hundred navy ships.
Darius I died in 486 BCE before he could carry out his plans for a third invasion of Greece Darius’ Tomb Darius I succeeded by his son Xerxes His son and successor, Xerxes I, attempted to fulfill his plan. In 480 BCE, Xerxes brought together an army of about 150,000 men and a navy of 600 ships to march on Greece. Xerxes
To avoid shipwreck off Mount Athos, Xerxes dug a canal behind the promontory (headland), which can still be seen today.
Next, Xerxes built a bridge of ships across the Hellespont.
The two bridges were made up of ships from the fleets of the Phoenicians and Egyptians, strapped together using cables of flax and papyrus.
For seven days and nights Persian soldiers marched across the bridges into Greece.
Second Persian War 480 BCE Hellespont: Europe to the left and Asia to the right
Over 100,000 Persian soldiers landed in Attica with a fleet of 1,200 ships.
The Greeks had less than 30,000 men and a few hundred ships.
Xerxes' army reached Macedonia in the north of Greece.
300 Spartan Hoplites and several thousand allied soldiers were sent to guard the narrow mountain pass of Thermopylae to hold back the massive Persian army and allow the Greeks to organize.
Plan of Thermopylae, 480 BCE
King Leonidas of Sparta, led the Greeks guarding the Thermopylae pass.
For two days the Spartans and their allies kept the massive Persian army back.
Then a Greek traitor told Xerxes of a path over the mountains.
When Leonidas saw the Persians approaching from the rear, he allowed the non-Spartan soldiers to leave and stood with his 300 Spartan hoplites, who were bound by oath, like himself, to conquer or die.
All 300 Spartans were killed.
The Persian army went to Athens but found it empty, the Athenians had time to escape.
King Leonidas by Jacques Louis David
The Battle at Salamis
The naval battle of Salamis was fought between the Greek city-states and Persia in September, 480 BCE.
The Greeks had 371 triremes and pentekonters (smaller fifty-oared ships). The Persian fleet had 1207 ships.
The Greek admiral Themistocles set a trap to force the Persians fleet through narrow strait at Salamis. That way, the Persian fleet could not surround the Greek ships.
Thermistocles sent a messenger to act like a traitor and tell the Persian king, Xerxes, that the Greeks were going to run away. Xerxes believed the messenger and prepared for victory.
Strait of Salamis Inside a trireme
The Persian navy met a well-ordered line of triremes.
The large Persian fleet could not navigate in the narrow strait.
The smaller Greek triremes surrounded the Persian navy on both sides. Greek Hoplite and Persian soldiers began hand to hand combat across the decks of the ships.
The Greek victory was a turning point in the war.
Hoplite Soldier Trireme
The battle took place in August 479 BCE, on the slopes of Mount Mycale, opposite the island of Samos.
The Greeks launched a surprise attack on the Persians and quickly defeated them.
After this battle the Persian army in Greece was completely defeated.
Battle of Mycale Battle of Mycale Greek soldier (left) Persian soldier (right)
Final battle in the Persian War in Boeotia, near the town of Plataeae.
The satrap of Sardis, Mardonius, sent Persian troops to destroy Athens.
The Spartan army advanced on the remaining army in Plataeae.
Almost every city in Greece sent soldiers to defeat the Persians, bringing the Greek army to almost 100,000 soldiers.
Though Herodotus claims the Persians had 1.7 million soldiers, the number was probably much smaller.
The Battle of Plataea, 479 BCE Boeotia
After the battles at Mycale and Plataea, the Persians were forced to retreat back into Lydia. The Persians no longer ruled over Greece or Ionia. In 465 BCE, Xerxes was murdered by his vizier (advisor) Artabanus. Mycale Vizier – Executive officer in Persia Initially the Persians were winning, but when their general, Mardonius, was killed in battle the Persians retreated and were slaughtered. Herodotus described the battle as “the finest victory in all history known to me”.
The victory at Salamis in 480 BCE was a huge success for Greece. Athens had beaten the greatest empire in existence at that time. In celebration, Pericles sponsored the playwright Aeschylus to write a tragedy named, The Persians, for competition in the annual dramatists competition in 472 BCE. Aeschylus and Thespians
The Persians is the oldest surviving play from Classical Athens. It tells the story of the Battle of Salamis from the Persian perspective. Xerxes is portrayed as the over-confident king. His arrogance offends the gods and he almost loses his entire kingdom. The spirit of his father Darius returns to tell him not to battle the Greeks. The play is actually sympathetic to the loss and suffering of the Persians. Theater of Dionysus
The Golden Age of Pericles
The founding of the Delian League
The Peloponnesian War
Plague in Athens
The Tyranny of the Thirty
Sparta dominates the city-states
Sparta did not join
The league was formed on the island of Delos under the guidance of Aristides of Athens.
Almost all of the Ionian Greek cities in Asia Minor joined immediately.
Athens was the head of the league.
By 448 BCE, Persia agreed to a permanent peace with Greece.
The Delian League, 443 BCE Aristides of Athens After the Persian War, the Greek city states formed the Delian League to provide mutual defense from attack.
Pericles was born in Athens in 493 BCE to a noble family. The Age of Pericles, 461-429 BCE When he was older, Pericles became involved in politics and was nicknamed "The Olympian" for his remote and distant manner. He was tutored by the philosophers Anaxagorus and Zenos. Pericles is known for his dedication to Greek democracy.
The period of Classical Greece ruled by Pericles is often refered to as "The Golden Age of Pericles". Pericles built the Acropolis, including the Parthenon, during his time. The Parthenon
Pericles was married before meeting Aspasia but little is known of his first wife. What we do know is that Pericles met the a beautiful and well educated Aspasia and moved into her home. Even Socrates made note of her intellect. Their relationship was considered somewhat scandalous in Athens. Aspasia, Consort of Pericles Aspasia was born in Miletus, an Ionian colony on the western coast of Turkey. She was allowed to be schooled at home and, when she came of age, left Melitus for Athens.
Pericles treated Aspasia as an equal, unheard of in Greek times. He consulted with her on important issues and allowed her to associate with the powerful men of Athens. He also displayed public affection for her. All of these things caused Aspasia to become the target of gossip and vicious rumors. Pericles and Aspasia in the Studio of Phidias
Pericles never married Aspasia. His own law prevented the children of marriages between Athenian aristocrats and foreign nationals from becoming citizens. Because of the law, none of his children with Aspasia could become citizens. Aspasia gave birth to a son by Pericles. Later, when Pericles died the assembly took pity on Aspasia and granted her son full citizenship.
The Peloponnesian Wars, 431 - 404 BCE
By the year 431 BCE Sparta challenged the authority of Athens.
Pericles went before the popular assembly and urged war against the Spartans.
He said, “If we go to war, as I think we must, be determined that we are not going to climb down. For it is from the greatest dangers that the greatest glories are to be won.”
After his speech the assembly voted to declaring war on Sparta. This was the start of the Peloponnesian war.
During the first year of the war Pericles gave his most famous speech. In this speech Pericles states his feelings about Athenian democracy: "Our form of government does not enter into rivalry with the institutions of others. Our government does not copy our neighbors', but is an example to them. It is true that we are called a democracy, for the administration is in the hands of the many and not of the few. But while there exists equal justice to all and alike in their private disputes, the claim of excellence is also recognized; and when a citizen is in any way distinguished, he is preferred to the public service, not as a matter of privilege, but as the reward of merit. Neither is poverty an obstacle, but a man may benefit his country whatever the obscurity of his condition." Pericles Pericles’ position on democracy
Pericles developed a perfect plan to defeat the Spartan Army.
Athenians would stay behind the city wall.
Athens would attack Sparta by sea, and hit-and-run attacks.
The Spartans, camped just 8 miles outside of Athens, could not use their powerful Hoplites in direct combat.
Hoplite with spear Athens and Sparta at war
Toward the end of the first year of the war the Black Plague broke out in Athens. Grain boats supplying Athens with food brought infected rats into the city walls. Plague in Athens, 430 BCE Yersinia pestis Suffering from the Plague The rats had lice carrying Yersinia pestis , the bacteria responsible for Bubonic plague. The plaque spread quickly throughout the city. Twenty percent of the 100,000 residents of Athens died. Bodies were piled high in the streets. Pericles lost both of his legitimate sons to the plague. Pericles also contracted the plague but lived for one more year until dying at the age of 65.
According to the Greek historian Thucydides: “ The bodies of dying men lay one upon another, and half-dead creatures reeled about in the streets. The catastrophe became so overwhelming that men cared nothing for any rule of religion or law.” Thucydides, a Historian
By 425 BCE, the war took a new turn. Both sides began taking more savage and cruel measures with one another. After conquering a city-state the women and children would be made slaves and often the entire male population of some cities would be murdered. The War Became Barbarous
Sparta encouraged members of the Delian League to leave the alliance, promising independence after Sparta won the war against Athens. Many city-states and colonies left the Delian League, and Athens was forced into an armistice in 423 BCE. After eleven years of war no side had a clear advantage. Athens Athens agreed to an armistice Armistice – An agreement to stop fighting
The Peace of Nicias 421 BCE
The Areopagus asked Nicias to negotiate a truce with Sparta.
It was to be a thirty year truce but in fact lasted only seven years.
Many city-states refused to agree with the conditions of the truce.
In 418 BCE, Sparta defeated the neighboring city of Argos, an ally to Athens. This was a cause for alarm. Athens turned to Alciabiades for leadership. Alcibiades Alcibiades
He was a charismatic aristocrat
He became strategos (general) of the city.
He sent Athenian hoplites to Argos and defeated the Spartans.
The Sicilian city of Segesta, an ally of Athens, came under attack by Corinth, an ally of Sparta. They asked for Athens to protect them. The Athenians planned to strike at Corinth by invading Syracuse, a Corinthian colony. Syracuse was the chief city of Sicily and one of the largest Greek colonies in the world. Temple ruin at Segesta Athens prepared to attack Sicily
Nicias opposed the attack on Syracuse, but Alcibiades supported it. To make a compromise between the two, the Athenian assembly named both Nicias and Alcibiades as commanders of the attack force. They sent along another commander named Lamachus to keep watch over both of them. Sicily
The attack force sent to Syracuse had 134 triremes and 27,000 men. But this story has a twist. Alcibiades Alcibiades defected to Sparta
The night before the force set sail someone vandalized many of the statues in Athens.
Rumors spread that Alcibiades did it.
He was known in the past to do outrageous things while drinking late at night.
After the fleet set sail the Athenian court issued a warrant for his arrest and sent a ship to arrest him.
Faced with an uncertain future Alcibiades jumped ship and defected to Sparta.
Nicias asked the Athenian Assembly to return home. Instead they sent a young commander named Demosthenes and 15,000 more men. The new force failed to take Syracuse. The Athenian ships were trapped by the Corinthians and burned while in harbor. The only way home for the army was to cross through Sicily and find an allied city. The 35,000 remaining soldiers were captured and almost all died in captivity.
Without Alcibiades the Athenians could not conquer Syracuse.
Lamachus was killed quickly in battle and Nicias was an incompetent commander.
Hoplite Soldier Athenians lost at Syracuse
Though Athens lost the battle for Syracuse it was not defeated.
Within a year, the city built another fleet and raised more soldiers from its allies.
But at the same time Sparta and Persia made an alliance against the Athenians in 413.
But Athens refused to give up.
In 414 BCE, the Areopagus brought Alcibiades back to Athens and forgave his treason.
Athens continued the war for four more years.
Alcibiades Athens built another fleet
In 407 BCE the Spartans named Lysander the chief general of their forces. Lysander was a true Spartan. He renounced all luxury, pleasure and unnecessary things in life. Lysander spent his first year as general building his forces, avoided conflicts, and cementing good relations with the Persians. Lysander becomes Spartan War Leader
In 408 BCE Athens built a new navy and won a major victory.
But on the way home 2,000 men died in storms.
The assembly blamed the generals in charge of the Navy and condemned them to death.
One of these was the son of Aspasia.
All of the generals were put to death as scapegoats.
Athens fell back into mob rule.
The assembly became vicious, they even voted to chop off the right hands of all prisoners of war to prevent them fighting again.
Socrates Athens descended to mob rule Scapegoat – A person who takes the blame for a problem.
The final naval battle of the Peloponnesian War came in 405 BCE.
The Athenian fleet stopped to gather fresh water and supplies.
The Corinthians and Spartans, under Lysander, captured the whole Athenian fleet by surprise.
Afterward the Spartan army invaded Attica in 404 BCE and forced Athens surrender.
In 404 BCE the victorious Spartan general, Lysander, replaced the assembly of Athens with an oligarchy of thirty men, called 'The Thirty'.
Under their rule 1500 people were executed, and 5000 more Athenians either fled the city or were exiled.
The Thirty also reduced the number of Athenian citizens to only 3,000 men from the 20,000 men as established by the rules of Cleisthenes.
The Tyranny of the Thirty Lysander
Greece settled into about 250 years of general peace, with only small scale battles occurring between rival city-states. Sparta dominated the city-states Pausanias The Spartan king, Pausanias, put an end to the rule by the Thirty and allowed democracy to return to Athens in 403 BCE.
The Archaic Period
Early Classical Period
High Classical Period
Late Classical Period
Greek sculpture Laocoön and his Sons (Late Hellenistic), Vatican Museum
Rigid, one-dimensional figures
Statues were simple, lifeless depictions of a god or a leader
Surviving examples of this time are the Kouros and Korai (male and female) figures
These statues typically stood rigid and straight-backed, staring straight ahead with no expression on the face except for a slight curving of the lips, which is now called the “archaic smile”
Kouros The Greeks advanced sculpture to its highest form in the ancient world. During the Archaic Period:
Around 480 BCE, sculptors of the early classical period began using a concept known as “weight shift.” Statues were made to look like they were moving through space instead of standing still. An example of this can be seen with the works of Kritios in his figure called the Kritian Boy .
The Classical period is divided into three categories:
Kritian Boy Early Classical Period
During the Early Classical Period the Archaic smile was replaced with a more contemplative expression. Archaic Smile
During this period sculptors tried to represent the human body in its perfect form. They used what is known as the Platonic canon of proportions. High Classical period, 450-430 BCE Platonic Canon of Proportions: A mathematical formula establishing ideal proportions of the various parts of the human body. The unit of measurement is usually the relationship of the head to the torso (1:7 or 1:10). Canon of Proportions by Leonardo da Vinci
Sculpture was characterized by:
Emphasis on emotions
Revealing something about their nature, their personality, and their relationship
Polycleitus of Argos carved Doryphoros ('spear bearer') demonstrating use of symmetry and balance
The canon of proportions
This was the time of the building of the Parthenon, which was supervised by the sculptor Phidias. High Classical Period Doryphoros
Began with the Peloponnesian War and ended with the death of Alexander the Great. Apoxyomenos Late Classical Period, 430-323 BCE Lysippos, the personal sculptor for Alexander the Great, mastered three dimensional spaces with his statue Apoxyomenos (a young man scraping mud and sweat from his body before bathing). The figure has outstretched arms.
During the Late Classical period sculpture placed their figures within a defined three-dimensional space.
The figure could be viewed from any angle.
The figure interacted with the space around it.
Sculptors added strong human emotions.
Classical writers and philosophers
Sophcles was a treasurer for Athens
Served as a general in 440 BCE
Acted as a priest
Great playwright known for his tragedies
Wrote 123 plays but only seven have survived
His most noted plays are: Antigone, Oedipus Tyrannos, and Oedipus at Colonus.
Sophocles (circa 496 – 406 BCE)
The opening lines of Antigone, from The Harvard Classics Enter ANTIGONE and ISMENE ANTIGONE ISMENE, mine own sister, dearest one; Is there, of all the ills of Œdipus, One left that Zeus will fail to bring on us, While still we live? for nothing is there sad Or full of woe, or base, or fraught with shame, But I have seen it in thy woes and mine. And now, what new decree is this they tell, Our ruler has enjoined on all the state? Know’st thou? hast heard? or is it hid from thee, The doom of foes that comes upon thy friends? ISM. No tidings of our friends, Antigone, Painful or pleasant since that hour have come When we, two sisters, lost our brothers twain, In one day dying by each other’s hand. And since in this last night the Argive host Has left the field, I nothing further know, Nor brightening fortune, nor increasing gloom Antigone by Frederic Leighton (British Painter 1830-1896)
Euripides, 480-406 BCE Only 18 complete plays of his 90 survived. Euripides’ plays had strong women characters, smart slaves, and made fun of many heroes of Greek mythology through satire. His work strongly influenecd Roman and French drama. His greatest works are considered to be Alcestis , Medea , Electra , and The Bacchae . Much of what we know about Euripedes comes from the Aristophones who enjoyed making fun of him. Euripedes apepars as a comic character in Aristophanes : The Acharnians , Thesmophoriazusae , and The Frogs.
Pythagoras 582-507 BCE Philosopher and mathematician from Samos. His most famous contribution to geometry is the Pythagorean Theorem which stated the proportions of any right triangle. a 2 + b 2 = c 2 Pythagorean Theorem a b c
Pythagoras also formed a brotherhood devoted to understanding the mystical properties of numbers. His teachings had a profound influence on Greek thinking. His concept of “Unity”, also called “Monad,” is introduced to us by his pupil, Theon of Smyrna: “ Unity is the principle of all things and the most dominant of all that is: all things emanate from it and it emanates from nothing. It is indivisible and it is everything in power. It is immutable and never departs from its own nature through multiplication (1 x 1 =1). Everything that is intelligible and not yet created exists in it; the nature of ideas, God himself, the soul, the beautiful and the good, and every intelligible essence, such as beauty itself, justice itself, equality itself, for we conceive of each of these things as being one and as existing itself.” Pythagoras
Parmenides was a Greek philosopher and poet. He was born in 510 BCE, at Elea (Velia), Italy. He taught that the world we perceive through our senses is really only illusion. Parmenides We only sense motion, plurality and multiplicity. What is real is never changing and constant through time. Truth can not be known through perception but only through logic and reasoning.
Zeno was a philosopher born in what is today Velia, Italy. He was a tutor of Pericles. Zeno was a student of Parmenides. What we know of Zeno comes from the writings of Aristotle. Zeno, 490-425 BCE Dialectic is defined as: any formal system of reasoning that arrives at the truth by the exchange of logical arguments Zeno is considered the inventor of the dialectic method of arguing. This method uses reasons from logic to consider the outcomes of both sides and decide which outcome is acceptable. ZENO
Zeno is remembered for his defense of various paradoxes. A paradox is a contradictory statement. Zeno’s argument: The Arrow "If everything when it occupies an equal space is at rest, and if that which is in locomotion is always occupying such a space at any moment, the flying arrow is therefore motionless." This line of reasoning was eventually explained mathematically through calculus, by Sir Isaac Newton in the early 1670s, using the concepts of instaneous rates, changes, speed and motion.
Physician from the island of Cos who is known as the father of medicine.
He based his medical practice on observations and on the study of the human body.
He believed that illness had a physical and a rational explanation.
He rejected the idea that illness was the result of misfortune or an act of the gods.
“ There are in fact two things, science and opinion; the former begets knowledge, the latter ignorance.” - Hippocrates, Law Hippocrates, 460-370 BCE
“ I will prescribe regimens for the good of my patients according to my ability and my judgment and never do harm to anyone. To please no one will I prescribe a deadly drug nor give advice which may cause his death. But I will preserve the purity of my life and my art.” The Hippocratic Oath, named for Hippocrates, is taken by physicians as a guide for the ethical practice of medicine. Below is an excerpt from the oath:
Socrates, 470-399 BCE
Son of a stonemason and a midwife.
Fought as a Athenian hoplite in the Peloponnesian Wars and was honored for his endurance and bravery.
Nicknamed “the gadfly” because once he began questioning someone he would not stop until he arrived at the truth.
Socrates did not write down his thoughts. What we know of him comes from the writings of his student Plato.
The three greatest Greek philosophers were Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle.
Socrates taught his students to question everything in the search for truth, even the leaders of Athens.
This led the government of Athens to put Socrates on trial in 399 BCE for the moral corruption of youth.
He was tried and sentenced to death by poison.
Even though his friends were willing to sneak him out of Athens, Socrates believed in the law above all else.
He drank hemlock poison while surrounded by his friends and peers.
Death of Socrates by Jacques Louis David
Plato 427-327 BCE
Philosopher from Athens
Student of Socrates
Founded the Academy in Athens
Wrote and lectured extensively throughout his life
Wrote about politics, ethics, metaphysics and epistemology
His most interesting writings are his dialogues. In these writings he explains his ideas, or the ideas of others, though reported conversation
He believed there existed a perfect form and perfect idea for everything.
Therefore, perfect beauty existed in the universe.
For Plato, the only way to truly understand the universe was through the intellect and mind, as pure idea.
He wrote about his perfect society in a book titled The Republic.
Plato attempted to prove a perfect universe of absolute truths. Absolute truth: always true
Socrates: I will; and first tell me, Do you admit that it is just for subjects to obey their rulers? Thrasymachus: I do. Socrates: But are the rulers of states absolutely infallible, or are they sometimes liable to err? Thrasymachus: To be sure, they are liable to err. Socrates: Then in making their laws they may sometimes make them rightly, and sometimes not? Thrasymachus: True. Socrates: When they make them rightly, they make them agreeably to their interest; when they are mistaken, contrary to their interest; you admit that? Thrasymachus: Yes. Socrates: And the laws which they make must be obeyed by their subjects,--and that is what you call justice? Thrasymachus: Doubtless. Socrates: Then justice, according to your argument, is not only obedience to the interest of the stronger but the reverse? Socrates and Thrasymachus from Plato’s Republic
Aristotle, 384-322 BCE Aristotle was born at Stageira, a colony of Andros on the Macedonian peninsula of Chalcidice. Aristotle was a student of Plato. Later, he became a tutor of Alexander the Great. Aristotle is also considered one of the greatest philosophers of Western thought. Unlike his teacher, Aristotle believed that knowledge came through the senses. We call this empirical knowledge.
Aristotle studied everything including anatomy, astronomy, economics, embryology, geography, geology, meteorology, physics, and zoology. He wrote about aesthetics, ethics, government, metaphysics, politics, psychology, rhetoric, theology, education, foreign customs, literature and poetry. Aristole broke away from Plato’s “ideal” universe and looked at the world of causes and facts. Plato and Aristotle
The Corinthian War
Haliartus and Nemea
The naval Battle of Cnidus
The King’s Peace
Battle at Naxos
Battle of Leuctra
The Corinthian War, 395–386 BCE
There were many small battles after the fall of Athens between various city states which led to the Corinthian War.
It was fought between Corinth, Argos, Thebes, and Athens, allied with Persia on one side versus Sparta.
These city-states challenged Sparta’s rule over Greece.
When Sparta went to war with Atraxerxes, the King of Persia, the city-states allied with Persia to challenge Sparta.
Corinthian brass coin Corinthian Stater, solider and helmet A stater is an ancient Greek coin.
The Battle of Nemea in 394 BCE was between Sparta and the allied cities of Argos, Athens, Corinth, and Thebes. The Spartans beat the allied city-states and continued to win every land battle after Nemea. Corinthian stater of Corinthian soldier and helmet Corinthian coin with Athena in Corinthian helmet Haliartus and Nemea The Battle of Haliartus in 395 BCE was between Sparta and Thebes. The Thebans defeated the Spartans and Lysander, the Spartan General, was killed in battle. This battle began the Corinthian War.
The alliance was more successful in battles at sea. The Athenian admiral Conon, with the help of the Persian fleet, destroyed the Spartan fleet at Cnidus, giving Athens naval supremacy of the seas. The naval Battle of Cnidus, 394 BCE The port at Cnidus
In 386 BCE, Sparta asked for peace with Persia and for Persia to stop supporting the other Greek city-sates. Artaxerxes II of Persia agreed to peace on his terms. The King’s Peace, 386 BCE Artaxerxes insisted that the Greek city-states of Asia Minor be returned to Persia, Greek city-states not in Persia become independent, and all leagues disbanded. This was called The King's Peace and ended the Corinthian War.
Battle at Naxos, 376 BCE Port of Naxos After peace with Persia, Sparta attacked the Thebans for making a league with the Boeotians. In 376 BCE, the Spartan navy fought the Athenians in the Battle of Naxos. The Athenian fleet defeated the Spartan fleet and kept the Spartans from dominating the Mediterranean. This was the beginning of Athens regaining its former power.
Thebes and Sparta continued to fight until Thebes, along with the Boetians, beat them at Leuctra in 371 BCE. 371 BCE - Battle of Leuctra Boeotia Thebes Athens Sparta
Before the Battle of Leuctra, when two Phalanx (group of soldiers) met on a battlefield, they approached each other with 12 men deep on the right side. The Phalanx would turn to the right attempting to subdue the other's left hand side. The Thebans placed 50 of the most powerful men on the left to engage the most powerful men of the Spartan Phalanx. The most powerful of the Spartans died quickly in battle and the remaining soldiers ran away.
Late Classical Period: 400 - 330 BCE
Alexander the Great
Alexander marched on Persia, conquered Egypt
Alexander conquered central Asia
Alexander invaded India
Alexander the Great died at Babylon
Map of Alexander’s Empire
Philip II becomes the King of Macedon, 359 BCE
Philip II was born in Pella, the capital of Ancient Macedon.
To secure peace with Thebes, Philip II was made a hostage by his brother, King Alexander II.
At the age of 23, he was allowed to return to Macedon when his older brothers Alexander II and Perdiccas III were killed.
He was made regent over his nephew, the son of Perdiccas and king to be, but managed to take the throne for himself in 359 BCE.
Philip used the skills he learned while a prisoner at Thebes to conquer the northern territories in Greece.
In 357 BCE, he took the Athenian colony of Amphipolis, which gave him control of the gold mines of Mount Pangaion and the wealth he needed to continue his expeditions.
He married the Epirote princess Olympias, daughter of the king of the Molossians, to have a western ally.
Philip subdued the Scythians to the North and the city-states of the Balkans.
However, his first attempt to defeat the Persians in Asia Minor in 339 BCE failed when the city of Byzantium repulsed his army.
The Phalanx was the primary fighting unit of all large armies. Philip designed and trained his troops with the sarissa, a six meter (18 foot) spear with a double pointed pike. The length of the sarissa kept away hoplites who used shorter weapons. This allowed the Macedonian army to dominate Greece under Philip. The sarissa and the Macedonian Phalanx
During the Battle of Chaeronea (338 BCE) in Boeotia, Philip defeated the armies of the Athenians and Thebians, which gave him control over all of Greece. Philip II After taking control of Greece, Philip formed the League of Corinth for the mutual defense against Persia. But before Philip had a chance to attack the Persians he was assasinated, for still unclear reasons, at his daughter's marriage ceremony. He was succeeded by his son, Alexander III, also known as Alexander the Great.
Alexander the Great reigned from 336-323 BCE After Philip’s assassination, the Macedonian army declared his 20 year old son, Alexander III, the king of Macedon. Immediately he was forced to make war against Thebes who tried to break away from Macedon rule. Once he arrived with his army, the city surrendered. With the exception of the Spartans, all of the Greek city-states loyal to Phillip II pledged themselves to Alexander. In 335 BCE, Alexander conquered the Thracians and the Illyrians along the Danube in Northern Macedonia. While at war in the North, the Thebans revolted again, but this time Alexander returned and razed Thebes to the ground, sold all of its citizens into slavery.
Alexander marched on Persia and conquered Egypt
Alexander marched on Persia, crossing the Hellespont with about 42,000 soldiers. He conquered the Persian capital at Sardis.
He went on to conquer the Kingdom of Phrygia and untied the Gordian knot.
Alexander crushed Darius' army at Issus in 333 BCE. Darius himself fled the battle.
He conquered Egypt and was made Pharaoh.
Alexander founded his Egyptian capital at Alexandria in 331 BCE.
Mythical Gordian Knot – whoever untied it would be king of Asia Phrygia
Alexander marched back into Persia and defeated Darius' army again.
Darius fled the battle again but was murdered by his own advisors.
Darius' murderer, Bessus, proclaimed himself as Artaxerxes V, king of Persia.
Alexander spent three years chasing Bessus and conquering much of Central Asia.
He took Media, Perthia, Aria, Drangiana, Arachosia, Bactrie, and Scythia.
He founded what we know today as Kandahar in Afghanistan and Alexandria in Tajikistan.
Alexander conquered Central Asia
Alexander marched his army toward India. His armies took Taxila, Aornos and the Kingdom of Porus, in Punjab, India. From there his armies turned up the Indus river. Alexander invaded India in 326 BCE Alexander’s army finally neared the Ganges river in India. His army, exhausted from years of fighting, mutinied and refused to march farther into India. Alexander agreed to return back to Babylon. Alexander the Great had conquered an empire larger than anything the world had seen before or since.
Alexander the Great died at Babylon, 323 BCE Alexander the Great died of a mysterious illness in the palace of Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon, June 10 - 11, 323 BCE. He was 32 years old.
After his in 323 BCE, the empire was divided among his most powerful generals. The Empire of Alexander the Great
Hellenistic Age: 330 - 30 BCE
Map of Hellenistic Empires
The Antigonid Dynasty
Philip V of Macedon
The Seleucid Empire
King Philip V loses to Roman forces
Macedonia becomes a Roman province
Corinth destroyed by the Romans
Sulla places all of Greece under Roman rule
Antigonid, Ptolemaic, and Seleucid Empires. Hellenism, the culture of Classical Greece, spread from the year 333 BCE throughout the Empire of Alexander the Great until circa 63 BCE when Rome conquered the territory. Greek culture strongly influenced Rome in the areas of politics, science, philosophy, religion, and architecture
Ptolemy I, a close advisor to Alexander the Great, took over the Egyptian part of the empire. His dynasty, the thirty-second, would be the last in Egyptian history. Although Ptolemy was Greek, as Pharaoh he used many of the traditions of Egyptian Kings. He and his successors married their sisters. Cleopatra VII Ptolemaic Dynasty The wives of the Ptolemaic Pharaohs were named Cleopatra "kleos" is the Greek word for "famous" and "patris" is the Greek word for "parents".
The Ptolemaic Pharaohs kept many Greek customs. They spoke Greek and made Greek the official language of Egypt. The Ptolemaic Pharaohs even changed the name of Egypt from Kemet, the ancient name of Egypt. Ptolemy Pharaoh
The Antigonid dynasty, founded by General Antigonus, ruled over Macedonia and the Aegean kingdoms, Asia Minor and Syria. Antigonus attempted to conquer the other two dynasties and form one great empire but lost everything but Macedon at the Battle of Ipsus in 301 BCE. The Antigonid Dynasty Antigonus I
Philip V ascended the Antigonid throne in 221 BCE and reigned until 179 BCE. His empire was filled with many rivalries from other city-states. Philip V of Macedon, 221 BCE Philip V Antigonid Dynasty He was succeeded by his eldest son, Perseus, who ruled as the last king of the Antigonid Dyansty. Macedon came under Roman rule after losing the Battle of Pydna in 168 BC.
Seleucus I Nicator who founded the Seleucid Empire, was one of Alexander the Great’s generals in Babylonia. He expanded his empire west to Syria, north to Thrace, and east to the Indus River valley. The Seleucids brought Hellenism to all of their empire. Seleucus I Nicator The Seleucid Empire The Seleucids could not maintain their empire and by 190 BCE the Romans conquered most of Anatolia, reducing the Seleucid Empire to Syria, Mesopotamia and most of the Persian plateau.
Indus River Thrace Syria
Hellenism was not always tolerated by the local people.
In 167 BCE, a Jewish priest named Mattathias started the revolt against the Hellenistic Seleucids when they erected a statue of Zeus in Jerusalem.
After his death, the revolt was led by his son, Judas Maccabaeus, who raised an army of Jewish dissidents.
He carried out a successful campaign of guerrilla warfare and defeated the Seleucid Army in 164 BCE.
This victory is celebrated by Jews around the world as Hanukkah.
A special candle holder with nine candles is used to celebrate Hanukkah Jewish Maccabean Revolt
King Philip V lost to Roman forces, 197 BCE
Macedonia became a Roman vassal state in 197 BCE after the Battle of Cynoscephalae, near Thesallay.
The Romans, led by Flamininus, easily surrounded the Macedonian phalanx.
The Macedonian phalanx, once the most powerful army unit of the ancient world, was proven inferior to the Roman legion.
Macedonia became a tribute state to Rome.
Roman coin of Flamininus Thessaly
“ The Roman order on the other hand is flexible: for every Roman, once armed and on the field, is equally well-equipped for every place, time, or appearance of the enemy. He is, moreover, quite ready and needs to make no change, whether he is required to fight in the main body, or in a detachment, or in a single maniple, or even by himself. Therefore, as the individual members of the Roman force are so much more serviceable, their plans are also much more often attended by success than those of others.” From the Roman historian Polybius, The Histories of Polybius Polybius describes the Roman Legion
The Fourth Macedonian War occurred between 149 and 148 BCE. The Macedonians attacked and were defeated by the Romans under Metellus Macedonicus. After this defeat, Rome made Macedonia into an official province of Rome, ending its independence. Macedonia Became a Roman Province, 146 BCE Roman and Macedonian Soldiers
Because the Corinthians had been part of the Macedonian War, t he Roman Consul Mummius ordered that the city be razed to put an end to Greek resistance. The city was burnt to the ground, the men slaughtered, and the women and children sold into slavery. Corinth destroyed by the Romans, 146 BCE Corinthian Vase The art treasures and gold were taken to Rome. The city was deserted for almost 100 years until it was refounded by Julius Caesar in 44 BCE as the capital of Roman Greece.
In 86 BCE Roman General Sulla’s legion sacked Athens. He defeated the Hellenistic armies and placed all of Greece under Roman control. Sulla placed all of Greece under Roman rule, 86 BCE Greece remained under the rule of foreign conquerors until it gained independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1832.
Other titles available in the United States history series: Colonization to Reconstruction: Early U.S. Review Colonial Era American Revolution Slavery Westward Movement Causes of the Civil War Civil War Reconstruction Rise of Industrial America Response to Industrialism Immigration and Urbanization America becomes a world power: Imperialism The Progressive Era The U.S. and World War One 1920’s Great Depression and New Deal: 1930’s Causes of World War Two World War Two 1950’s 1960’s Civil Rights Movement Cold War: Truman to Kennedy Cold War: Johnson to the fall of the Berlin Wall Vietnam Late History Overview: 1970s, 1980s, 1990s World History titles: The Conquest of Mexico European Imperialism 1800-1914 Nationalism in Europe 1830-1914 French Revolution Kingdoms and Empires in the Fertile Crescent: Sumer to Persia Ancient Egypt: Neolithic to Roman Conquest Aegean Civilizations Please visit our website as we continually publish new titles: www.multimedialearning.org HMS Historical Media, a division of Multimedia Learning, LLC, has 26 classroom ready historical simulation games available on various topics. Please visit our website for more details: www.multimedialearning.org