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The Aegean Civilization
Minoans – Island of Crete
Mycenaeans – Greek mainland
Trojans – Asia Minor or Turkey
Ended 1400 BC
Produced clay vases, bronze daggers, cups of gold and wall paintings
Traded with Egypt
Mycenaeans were a warlike people who likely destroyed them .
On the Greek mainland
Greeks of the Trojan War in Homer’s epics of the Iliad and the Odyssey.
Arrived in Greece in 1900 BC and adopted the Minoan culture
Invaded by the Dorians 1100 to 800 BC
Mycenaeans destroyed the city of Troy after a 10 year siege.
They left a wooden horse – Trojan Horse
Iliad – War of the Greeks against Troy
Odyssey – Adventures of a brave Greek Warrior on his 10 year journey after the war with Troy.
The Olympian Gods – Homer wrote about them.
Associated with powers of nature
Zeus was the chief god – thunder and lightning
Apollo – Connection with the sun
Poseidon – Sea
Artemis - Moon
They were different than the gods
They could die
Achilles – invincible Greek warrior
Greek down fall
Greek religion offered no standard of morality or incentives for just living
“How far, indeed, did the Olympian or “Homeric” deities of the Acropolis – those gods to whom magnificent temples were dedicated in every Greek city – offer true freedom of spirit of the Greek citizen?”
Those temples, and the gods’ images that stood within, were symbols of civic pride , and often of civic arrogance ; these were “official” gods, but they did not speak to private conscience, or nourish the human longing for immortality, or clearly declare a norm for what men and women ought to be.
Grew from the worship of Ancestors
Acropolis – “polis” – city which was on a hilltop. Seat of government and of religion
150 city – states
Start of the Olympics to honor the god Zeus 776 B.C. was the first year of the Olympics
Olympics were suspended in A.D. 394 but revived in 1896
Politics of Ancient Greece
Monarchy – rule by one
Council of the Elders and the Assembly
Aristocracy – rule by the best
Aristocrats were of noble birth and had an important religious role. They were better than the average citizen they thought.
Oligarchy – rule by the few (rich)
Tyranny – rule by one man who has seized power by rebellion and insurrection.
Democracy – rule by the many or the common people. Only citizens could participate in government. (Women, slaves and men born outside the city-state were not citizens)
Spartan Military State
Three classes of people – Ruling class, middle class and the slaves (helots)
Expanded by conquering
Education was only physical training
Chief duty was that of a soldier
Last monarch 1050 BC
Chose “Archon” to be chief
Solon’s Laws 594 BC
Repealed harsh laws
Forbade parents to sell their children
Ordered every father to teach his son a trade
Required sons to support their aged father
Every native born had the right to vote
461 to 429 BC
Direct Democracy – citizens made the big decisions of government
All citizens could assemble in one place, speak and listen to speeches and then make the decisions
“Golden Age of Greece”
Alexander the Great
Finished what his father Philip II started in conquering the Persian Empire
Pupil of Aristotle – learned Homer’s Iliad
Thought himself as the new Achilles
Introduced Greek culture to the world
Died 33 years of age – fever or poison after returning from India
Empire divided among 4 generals
700 BC to 338 BC when conquered by the Macedonians
Philosophy – “Man is the measure of all things”
Education – high regard to learning , began at 7 years of age
Sculpture – 5 th century able to imitate the human form
Architecture – Temples in Athens, most famous is the Parthenon. It was dedicated to Athena, goddes of Athens.
Greek writers – Aesop – freed slave
He wrote fables – brief story used to teach a moral.
Hippocrates – Father of medicine
Disease resulted from rationally explainable causes.
The regimen I adopt shall be for the benefit of my patients according to my ability and judgment, and not for their hurt or for any wrong. I will give no deadly drug to any, though it be asked of me, nor will I counsel such, and especially I will not aid a woman to procure abortion . . .
Whatsoever house I enter, there will I go for the benefit of the sick, refraining from all wrongdoing or corruption, and especially from any act of seduction, or male or female, of bond or free.
Socrates 470-399 BC
Search for Absolutes (Ultimate foundational truths)
“ What is the best way to live?”
He was poisoned for denying the existence of the gods
Inspired Plato who attempted to find an explanation for the obvious order, design,and purpose in the universe
Aristotle – 384 -322 BC
Student of Plato
Concluded that the order of the universe must have come from God
Tutor of Alexander the Great
Stoicism – live according to reason, obey the law of nature, seek to do lasting good, honor all men as brothers and remain indifferent to the pleasures and pains of life.