Chapter 6: The Rise of Ancient Greece

Chapter 6: The Rise of Ancient
The Parthenon in Athens
Section 1: The Rise of Greek Civilization
Temple of Didyma
Where is Greece?
Greece’s Geographic Setting
 Greece is made up of
Peninsula: an area of land
surrounded by water on three sides
 Greece made up of mountains
 Greek communities split up,
had their own land, customs,
and beliefs on how to live
Communities fought one another
despite sharing a heritage (they had
the same ancestors), language, and
 Discovery Streaming:
Geography of Greece
 Based on Greece’s geography?, why was it difficult
for Greek communities to be united?
Greek Beginnings – Minoan Civilization
 Minoans lived on island of Crete
from 3000 BC – 1100 BC
Traded with mainland Greece as
well as islands
Knossos – main city, origin of
grand architecture and art
1400s BC – Knossos destroyed
(likely by Mycenaeans), Minoans
began decline
Earned power through trade
Discovery Streaming: Crete
The Mycenaeans
 Mainland Greece – home
of Mycenaean culture
 Height of power around
1400 BC
 Earned power through
 Discovery Streaming
Video: Mycenae
Connections to Current Events
 What advantages does a country have if they trade
with other countries?
 The US is involved in a lot of international trade.
What is one country that you think trades a lot with
America? (Hint: think of tags on products that say
“made in ________”)
The Trojan War
 Mythical war between Greece and city of Troy (in
There WERE actual conflicts between Greece and Troy, but the
details of the war were exaggerated
 Homer’s epic poems, The Iliad and The Odyssey tell the
story of the Trojan war
 According to legend, Greeks offered the Trojans a giant
wooden horse as a peace offering
Greek warriors hid inside the horse and climbed out once the horse
was wheeled into Troy, destroyed Troy
 In reality, Troy was destroyed by fire in 1200s BC,
perhaps by Greek invaders
The Dark Ages of Greece
 After Trojan War, Greek
civilization collapsed
Trading was reduced
Very little writing or art
 Greece’s Dark Ages: early
1100s BC – 750 BC
 Stories were passed down
through word of mouth, not
 People resettled to farms
City-States Develop
 Around 750 BC, city-states began to form
 City-state: an independent state made up of several villages
grouped together
 There were hundreds of Greek city-states
 Respond: What are the advantages and
disadvantages of having many smaller independent
states, as opposed to one large central government?
Aristocracy: Nobles Rule/A New Type of Ruler
 Most city-states ruled by aristocrats – members of
rich and powerful families
 Common Greek citizens wanted their voices to be
Organized small military groups to overthrow aristocrats
Military strength was shifted to merchants and craftsmen
 Tyrant – a ruler who seizes power by force
 Supported by middle and working classes
Democracy in Greece
 Some city-states adopted a new form of
Democracy: government where citizens govern
 Athens was best example of a city-state
Solon – Athenian leader whose laws reformed
economy and government of Athens
Freed anyone who was enslaved for having debts and
cancelled debts
Allowed any male citizen of Athens aged 18 or older to
debate laws
 Restrictions
 Only 1 in 5 Athenians was a citizen (had to have
Athenian mother and father)
 Women and non-citizen men did not take part in
 Discovery Streaming Video: The Democracy of
 What were the pros and cons of the Greek
Section 2: Religion, Philosophy, and the Arts
The Golden Age of Athens
 Golden Age of Athens: 479 B.C – 431 B.C
 Athens became rich from trade and from silver mines
 Tribute – payments made to Athens by allies as a sign of
 Pericles – Member of aristocratic family, but
supported democracy
460 B.C. – became leader of democratic group
Reformed and strengthened democracy
City had to pay a salary to officials, so poor citizens could hold
public office
Construction of Parthenon – temple to honor the goddess
The Parthenon
Pericles Builds the Parthenon
The Wonders of the Acropolis
 Why do you think Pericles was such a popular ruler?
Would you have liked living in Athens under his
Ancient Greek Religious Beliefs
 Twelve Olympians –
family of Greek gods and
goddesses, each ruling
over a different area of
human and natural life
A few notables: Zeus (ruler of
all gods and humanity),
Athena (goddess of wisdom
and war), Apollo (god of
music, poetry), Poseidon (god
of earthquakes and ocean)
Gods and Goddesses
 Greeks believed gods were
immortal, meaning that they
lived forever
Zeus ruled all gods from Mount
Olympus, Greece’s highest
 Each city-state honored one of
the twelve gods
Athena was goddess of Athens
 Olympic games created to
honor Zeus
 Discovery Streaming: Ancient
Greek Gods
 There is a larger variety of religious beliefs in
modern-day America than there were in Ancient
Greece. Why do you think that is?
 What are some examples of buildings in your
neighborhood that are used for religious purposes?
The Oracles
 Oracle – sacred site where
Greeks believed the gods
They would visit the oracles to
ask for advice, and answers
would come from priests who
were thought to be able to
interpret answers from gods
Most famous oracle is in
Delphi, Greece
Greek Science and Philosophy
 Philosopher – a person
who believed that people
could use powers of the
mind and reason to
understand natural
Thales – believed water was
the basic material of the
Democritus – believed
everything was made up of
 Socrates spent his days in
the marketplace talking to
 Socrates wanted people to
question their beliefs
Questioned traditional justice
 Socrates brought to trial in
399 BC
Accused of dishonoring gods
and misleading young people
Sentenced to death
Plato and Aristotle
 Plato – one of Socrates’
Did not trust democracy
Believed that society should be
made up of three groups: workers,
soldiers, and philosopher-rulers
Founded the Academy
Philosophy school in Athens
 Aristotle
Student at the Academy
Believed that reason should guide
the pursuit of knowledge
Later founded his own school, the
 Socrates urged his students to question and critically examine all
around them. For “corrupting the youth” in this way, an
Athenian jury sentenced him to death.
 Why do you think some people believed Socrates
corrupted the youth of Athens?
 How do some people in our society react to radical
and different ideas? Give an example.
 How can you remember the order of the three main
S – Socrates
 P – Plato
 A - Artistotle
Visual and Dramatic Arts
 Greeks used visual
arts to honor gods
The Parthenon
 Pericles rebuilt Acropolis
area of Athens
 Most magnificent building:
Temple to Athena
Goddess of war
Made of marble
40-foot statue of Athena
 The Parthenon is the symbol of Athens. Write down
examples of buildings or structures that are so
famous that they have become the symbol of the city
or country in which they are located.
 Athenians wrote the first
dramas and performed
them before crowds
 Tragedy – a serious story
that usually ends in
disaster for the main
 400s BC – poets wrote
comedies to make fun of
famous citizens and to
joke about Greek
 Athens was very liberal –
people were accepting of
the humor
 Greek Theater
Many City-States, One People
 People in Athens were very
proud of their city
Took an active role in their
Spread progressive ideas to enhance
their culture
 While Athens was the most
prominent city-state, there were
Every four years, city-states would
compete in the Olympic Games
against one another
First Olympics in 776 B.C.
 Ancient Olympia and the Olympic
 What role did education and growing wealth play in
the development of philosophy and the arts in
ancient Greece?
 What made the Golden Age of Athens so “golden”
and great?

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