The Greek World
• Creative people
• Time thinking about
purpose of life
• Organizing and doing
• History, astronomy,
philosophy, music, drama
• First Olympics.
• B.C. and A.D.
– 1500 years ago, a monk worked
out a Christian system for dating
events, starting with the year he
believed Christ was born. He
called the years after this event
Anno Domini (in the year of the
Lord) and the years before
Christ’s birth are before Christ.
– To date an event before Christ
we count backwards from 1.
Math & Science
Alexander the Great
Pyrrho of Elis
• Freedom (every district separated by
mountains or the sea = distinct groups)
• No one leader, believe in worth of the
• Each person do their very best (excellence)
at any task he/she undertook
• Balance Mind and Body
• “Nothing in excess” and “Know thyself”
Large deposits of clays available
Red-figured (background painted black and figures left in natural red
Black-figured (painted in black over red clay)art
Functional and beautiful
The Greek word for ceramics comes from keramos. This name came
from Keramikos, a part of Athens near or around the Dipylon Gate.
Potters lived and produced their wares in this area.
• Seen in several
of the buildings
• City of Athens built
around a flat-topped
limestone rock call the
• Built a wall around it,
dedicated it to Athena
(Battle Goddess and later
Goddess of reason,
wisdom and purity)
• Religious shrine and
fortress, lots of temples to
honor their gods &
• City-States (polis=political organization) meaning the
city, land around it and all the population.
• Symbolized home, nation, country and religion
• Every citizen participated in the life and government of the
• Small enough for every citizen (only males who could vote
counted), around 5,040 citizens totaling around 50,000
including women & children
• All came together as a unit when threatened by foreign
• Four city-states: Athens, Sparta, Corinth, Thebes
Golden Age during Pericles (grew,
five miles from the sea)
Governed by a king that later
became a member of the
Areopagus, a council of statesmen.
Statesmen prepared political
matters for the general assembly to
vote on and also judged murder
City grew, problems between the
farmers and aristocrats, so
economic and social reforms to
make Athens first democracy in
Survived two Persian Wars,
surrendered to Sparta during
Peloponnesian War in 404B.C.
• Second best known city-state
• Military state, closed society
• Valleys of Peloponnesus,
fertile & well-watered, three
sides surrounded by
mountains (great defense)
•Three classes of people:
–Spartans, descendents of Dorians,
rulers (best soldiers in the world)
–Helots, slaves of the state (not able
–Free farmers and craftsmen (not
able to vote)
Male/female rigorouslytrained from
Boys taken from families at age 7 to
live in barracks, began their only
career, a soldier
Learned total obedience,
superhuman endurance, and skills of
Close-shaved heads, marched
Life as a Spartan boy…
Male/female rigorously trained from birth, physically and emotionally.
Boys taken from families at age 7 to live in barracks, began their only career, a
Learned total obedience, superhuman endurance, and skills of a soldier.
Close-shaved heads, marched barefoot.
Story of a Spartan boy who stole a fox, hid it under his garment and it ate a hole in
his stomach, but would never show pain or admit theft.
Age 20 - 30 cadet, guarding the borders, policed the country and controlled the
slaves. Kill anyone who was rebellious or showed potential leadership (Crispin)
Age 30, married, mature enjoyed rights and duties of a citizen until 60, military duty
over then train youth or public service.
Lost only two battles in 500 years, terrifying in combat, wearing garlands on their
heads and marching to a piper’s religious hymn, total order, no fear or hesitation.
Bay of Marathon: 20, 000 Medes and Persians
Greeks meet them with 10,000 Athenians and
Before the battle, Athenians, sent the fastest
runner in Greece to bring help from Sparta (150
Spartans wouldn’t come, religious festival
(took only two days of running.)
Greeks watching Persians from the hills around
Marathon, outnumbered, but decided to take
them by surprise.
Persians thought Greeks crazy and retreated to
ships and destroyed 7 of their ships, they
Sent Pheidippides (already exhausted) to race
the 25 miles back to Athens to tell of their
Uttered “Rejoice, we conquer” and
April 10, 1896 twenty-five young men
started running toward Athens from
Marathon to recreate that 25 mile run.
1908 changed from 25 miles to 26
miles, later Boston Marathon changed
to 26.2 distance from it’s starting to
Life as a Spartan Girl…
• Freest in Greece.
• Participated in many sports
• Throw the discus, wrestled,
learned to use javelin
(instrument of war).
• Healthy mothers = healthy
children for their state.
Motto: “Citius, Altius, Fortius” (Latin: “Faster, Higher, Braver”)
in 1895 by Father Didon, a French Educator
• Goal: to contribute to a peaceful and
better world by educating youth through
sport, which is practiced without
discrimination of any kind and in the
olympic spirit of friendship, solidarity and
• Creed: “The most important thing in the
Olympic Games is not to win, but to take
part, just as the most important thing in
life is not the triumph, but the struggle.
The essential thing is not to have
conquered, but to have fought well.
Olympic Rings Symbol
• Five rings symbolize the five continents
represented in the games (Europe, Asia, Oceania
and the Americas)
• Colors of the rings: Blue, Yellow, Black, Green
and Red (every country’s flag in these
continents has at least one of these colors in it)
Myths are symbolic stories created by
the ancient peoples to explain their
world. When the ancient Greeks
were frightened and did not
understand what was going on, they
created a story to explain it
example: did not understand thunder, so created
a story about a god that was angry and shook the
Gods and Goddesses
Exciting stories, well-defined
characters, heroic action, challenging
situations and deep emotions (magic,
beauty, strong visual images)
• Aesop was a Greek
slave who wrote fables
• Fables are short stories
that teach a moral truth.
• Simple plots, animal
human traits and
explicitly stated morals
• Greek lyre
• Made from large tortoise
• Similar to Harp of today
• Apollo, the God of Music,
played for other Gods on
MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS IN
• Many of our words today are borrowed from the
• The root of many words like telescope (tele=far
off) or thermometer (thermo=heat)
• The word alphabet comes from alpha and beta, the
first two characters in the Greek alphabet.
Ancient Greek Literature
• Iliad and the Odyssey, by blind poet Homer
• Written and recited as songs.
• Iliad means “poem about Troy”, tells a tale
of a great hero or many great heroes.
• Odyssey, similar to Iliad.