Greece part 1 - Kenston Local Schools

 Foundation of European civilization.- copied by almost
 Two parts to Ancient Greek history
 Hellenic 800 bc- 338 bc
 Hellenistic 338 bc to 147 bc
“Intrinsic” Values
 Intrinsic means “Core” or
“Central” the ideas at the
heart of society
 For Greece: creativity and
 Experimentation and
invention (art,
literature, science,
 Peninsula between
Aegean and Ionian Sea
 Land Rocky- sea best
for travel (great sailors)
 Landscape encouraged
development of small
city states (not one big
 People have lived in Greece since the stone age.
 Permanent settlements began around 2000 bc.
(Bronze Age)
 Still learning about first peoples
 Minoans- Oldest Greek Civilization- began
2000 bc. On Island of Crete. Named for legend
of King Minos and the Minotaur.
 What do we know? Wealthy- Built large
palaces. Peaceful-few weapons. Culture
destroyed around 1400 bc- don’t know how
 Mycenaeans First civilization on Greek
mainland-1600 bc
 What do we know? Built fortified citiesmuch more aggressive. Also disappeared
w/ no certain cause- around 1100 bc
 1100- 800 bc “dark ages” of Greek history- a time of chaos
and confusion
 The basic unit of Greek civilization.
 Started around 800bc as a fortress- grew to include town
and surrounding countryside
 The idea is a “city state”- but there is more to it. It is a
community- all people are connected to each other.
 Defined by
 Geography
 Citizens
 Politics
 Economics
 Not very large (even for ancient world) you are
supposed to know people and your place- and
understand that polis is the most
important thing in life
 Same (0r similar)
 Language
 Religion (but each focus on different gods)
 Different governments
 Different $$- and focus of the economy
 Different patron god/goddess
 Different calendars
 Poleis were often competitive: both peacefully
(Olympics) or violently (war)
 The variety shows creativity. In all types citizens
have rights/duties that are clearly understood.
 Monarchy: “rule of one”, one person makes decisions
 Oligarchy: “rule of few”, small group makes decisions
 Democracy: “rule of many”, large group makes decisions
(shows faith in citizens)
 Tyranny: a government that gets its power illegally. Not
necessarily bad.
 Duty of all citizens to protect the polis. (Fighting
together increases feeling of connection)
 Hoplite: Greek citizen soldier. Had to have
 Helmet
 Fought in Phalanx- a close
formation of soldiers working
together as a shield wall
 Before 800 bc
 An idealized time when the gods walked the earth.
(“once upon a time”….) the age of myths- full of heroes
and miracles
 Told as EPIC (storytelling) poems to teach moral
 Each polis had own local legends and heroes- all
Greeks could claim “legendary” ancestors
 No sacred work to pass on
moral code
 Pray when you need
something- give offerings
 No afterlife- everyone goes
to the underworld
 Three main purposes
 Explain nature/catastrophe
 Explain strong emotion
 Explain good/bad luck
 See Chart
 Lived on Mount Olympus- but could come
to earth. Jealous and easily offended.
 Several “sets” Olympians were main batch
(Zeus etc….) children of the Titans Cronus and Rhea.
There were also many “demigods” (Heracles etc…) and
creatures with special powers in nature (fauns
 Myths- traditional stories of the gods- no known authors.
Entertainment as well as religion- give explanation for how
the world came to be- warnings about improper behavior.
Two main concerns TYCHE (Fate) and HUBRIS (pride)
 Temple- Specific for each god/goddess Largest in the polis
would be for patron- though most gods would have
temples. Give offering in return for a favour.
 Oracle- a place to talk to the gods- and get an answer. Most
famous was the oracle of Apollo at Delphi.
Iliad and Odyssey
 Epic (storytelling) poems written by HOMER in
the dark ages (no proof he existed). THE classics of
Greek literature- tell us a LOT about what Greeks
valued in society.
 Iliad- story of the 10 year Trojan war
Odyssey10 year Journey of Odysseus
 Stories are about love/honor/heroic behavior- set
the standard for the Greek ideal. No matter how
great you are you will be tested, and the gods are
not impartial or fair. You can try- buy there is no
way to avoid your fate.
Daily Life in Ancient Greece
Home Life
 Houses built around a
courtyard for privacy.
 Dining room main “social”
area- women’s rooms
 Food was mostly grains and
cheeses- wine was main
drink (meat for special
 Olive oil used for cooking
and preserving food (no
Family structure
 Marriages were arranged- large families
were encouraged (exposure for
unwanted children) take care of older
 Husbands and wives were not equal- husband in
charge – could dictate anything
 Each encouraged to have own friends- friends were for
talking- not spouses.
 No family recreation
 Greece first civilization to make education a priority- it
made people better citizens
 Only boys could get formal education
 Pedagogue- slave responsible for early education- you
went to “school” only for advanced learning
 Main subjects were: Philosophy, Ethics and Rhetoric
 Trade was the backbone of the economy. Greeks were
great sailors- easy to travel to distant lands
 Olive oil, wine and pottery were most prized Greek
trade goods
 Land hard to farm (and in short supply) so Poleis
founded colonies around the Mediterranean.
Increased contacts with other civilizations

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