The ancient Greek civilization lasted from the 6th and 8th century BC to 146th century BC. The classical age of the Greek civilization also fell in this age, during the 4th and 5th century BC. It was in this time span that under the leadership of the Athenians, the Greeks defeated the Persian army. Ancient Greek geography was in some ways different than the geography of modern Greece.
According to Ancient Greek Life History, Ancient Greece Civilization has a lot to learn from – whether it be the government, arts, and culture, cities, and planning, games/sports, technology, and inventions.The ancient Greek theater flourished during the time between 550 BC and 220 BC. Athens was the center of all the theatricals. Athens was the largest ancient Greek city. It was governed by a region called Attica. It was a prosperous city.
History of Ancient Greece
The Greek ancient period is said to have started around 1200 BC with the dark ages when the Mycenaean civilization collapsed and along with it literacy and therefore sources to reconstruct the era.
The archaic phase beginning around 800 BC saw the re-emerging of urban cities and the rise of city-states governed by their types of political systems.
The archaic phase gave rise to the classical period which lasted from 500 -323 BC and is said to be the peak of the ancient Greek civilization. It saw tremendous progress in art, architecture, philosophy, literature, etc. It also saw the rise of the famed Athenian democracy which has inspired modern western democracies.
The ending phase was known as the Hellenistic period which is said to begin with the death of Alexander the Great. The Hellenistic period was the peak of Greek art with almost realistic portrayals of human emotions in the statues and sculptures.
This was the phase where Greek culture spread around the world with the generals of Alexander like Selucas setting up empires across central Asia up to the southwest part of the Indian subcontinent.
The phase ends with the Roman domination of the Greek lands when the Greek political states decline but mix the Roman culture and leave it to mark permanently on the Roman empire.
Wars in Ancient Greece
Ancient is also known for its specific style of war and soldiers which are known as the Hoplites. They were the heavily armoured infantry fighting in tight formations and engaged in decisive battles with very little area for tactics.
With the geography of ancient Greece only allowing a limited amount of agriculture, the resources were scarce and wars were very common. Powerful states colonised lesser states for tribute and also farmable lands.
The ancient Greeks seriously saved the challenge during the Persian invasions first under Darius and then again under his son, Xerxes who led a huge army across the Greek land and even burned Athens. The tide of the battle turned with the battle of Thermopylae where only 300 Spartans stopped a huge Persian army for days. The Greeks ultimately overcame the Persians by uniting against the foreign enemy.
After reeling the Persians they again got engaged in the Peloponnesian war where almost the entire Greek world got involved in a war between a faction led by Athens and another led by Sparta. It was the battle between the best land army of Spartans and the best-known navy of Athens. The Spartans ultimately won the war but only with the help of the Persians and brought the downfall of the Athenians.
Soon, Macedonia rose to prominence under Philip who modernised the army and tactically innovated to create a formidable army that captured half the Greeks states.
The ancient Greek games were of four kinds- Olympian, Ne-mean, Isthmian, and Pythias. All the four of these games were dedicated to several gods.
The ancient Greeks were very fond of games and sports and one of their biggest legacies is the Olympics which has been adapted into the modern extravaganza we know today.
Ancient Greek buildings reached a point of extinction during the period of time ranging from the close of the Mycenaean period till about the 7th century BC. The temple was amongst the finest constructions of the Greeks. It served a dual function. Firstly, it served the functions of the modern church. Secondly, it served as a place where the deity was safely placed.
According to the ancient Greeks, the house was the heart of the man and it was the main thing of which the man was very proud of. It was a safe and secure place, where he could protect his family from the neighborhood men and also outsiders.
In the Ancient Greek Life History, Greeks had a lot of different types of governments since you had many city-states in Ancient Greece and hence each of them had their own respective government. Also, the idea which people had with respect to what constituted a good government kept changing over the times.
Ancient Greece was mostly ruled by aristocrats or oligarchies in which participation was restricted to a specific class of privileged individuals which was sealed by birth. They made the policies of the state, controlled the lands and even oppressed the people. There were other forms of government too but still, the aristocrats enjoyed superior power with huge wealth and special privileges.
Sometimes when the people became frustrated with the corrupt aristocrats they supported a single aristocrat or a military general who rose to overthrow the aristocratic system to become tyrants who took up political power in their own hands. The archaic age was especially known as the age of Tyrants.
Ancient Greece is also famed for establishing the first-ever form of democracy. In the classical period around the 4th century BC, Athens established an egalitarian system of government where the people voted to decide the policies of the state directly and called it democracy. Modern western countries were greatly influenced by this egalitarian form of governance and it inspired the establishment of democracies.
- Economy according to the ancient Greeks didn’t mean the same thing as it does to us. According to the economy means the rules of the household.
- The ancient Greek calendar was complex and confusing. A comparison may be drawn between the Greek calendar and the cities of Greece. It bore a resemblance to religious norms. But each state had its separate version of the calendar. The Greek calendar followed a Solaris system. The two characteristics of the Greek calendar are: it had twelve months. Ancient Greek architecture was all about style and a classic tradition. Greek architecture is the base of all western architecture.
- The ancient Greek gods and goddesses were many. They have classified into different groups based on their importance. Authority and prominence were the two important categories that decide the importance of the ancient Greek gods and goddesses.
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