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Early Greek History
Transcript of Early Greek History
Culture, Arts, and Philosophy
In 900 B.C., the clothing worn was vastly different than in modern day. Wool and linen were primarily used to make the robes and tunics that both the men and women wore. Also, hats were commonly worn at the time. Almost all of these garments were home-made.
Religion was a very important part of Greek life. Almost all of nature was explained through many legends of the titans, gods, and mythical creatures. Below is a video explaining some of the Greeks' beliefs.
If you were an ancient Greek, there would be many things to do throughout your day. Although, these things would largely depend on whether you were a male or female. As a male, you could be farming to raise money for your family or you could be training for an upcoming war. You could be hunting for food or discussing politics. Also, you could be acting in a play that only men could watch. Women, on the other hand, were expected to work exclusively as housewives, with the exception of being a priestess. Most Greek children passed their time by playing games, although any physical games were primarily for boys. Normally, their educations began at around the age of seven.
In ancient Greece, there were really only three social classes. The lowest class was that of the slaves, who were the unpaid workers of the other classes. Metics are in the middle. People that come into Greece from other countries are considered Metics, and their rights are limited compared to civilians; the highest class. Civilians have all the rights that we would have today in that environment. Women adopt the social class of her husband.
Pottery was one of the most popular art forms at the time. Almost all pottery created by the ancient Greeks was used for utilitarian purposes, such as water jugs and urns, so they were utilized in more than just decoration. Also, the pottery was often painted, and these paintings usually give insight into what the Greeks do. These pots and vases are still around today.
Music was a very important part of many ancient Greeks' lives. All ceremonial events in ancient Greece are accompanied by music in some way. Almost all men try to learn to play an instrument, and even women participated in creating music. Also, Greek music is referenced in many books during that time period.
Sculptures thrived in ancient Greece. They could be made out of stone, bronze, or even gold. Although the sculptor was not usually respected, as sculpting was considered unskilled work, their sculptures were praised. Over the three sculpting periods, Archaic, Classical, and Helenistic, many works of art were made that still stand today.
In ancient Greece, theatre was originally used as another tradition to worship the gods. They quickly became forms of entertainment for many people from many different countries. The two most common types of plays these ancient people came to see were tragedy and comedy.
The ancient Greeks spent a lot of time planning and creating buildings. Architecture is a very important part of every ancient monument, and it is the reason many of them still stand today. These sturdy structures were constructed from stone, as it was very common and effective. Columns were used to support many of these structures, becoming very famous, and 3 different styles of them emerged: Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian.
What is Philosophy?
"n.;the rational investigation of the truths and principles of being, knowledge, or conduct."
At around 640 B.C., philosophy was the ancient Greek's first way of explaining their world without mythology. It did not have the name "philosophy," translating to the love of wisdom in Greek, until Pythagoras labelled it so during mid 500 century B.C. Many philosophers came after him, including the renowned Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle.
Thales of Miletus
Socrates was a very dedicated philosopher from Athens. He openly displayed his love of wisdom and disbelief in myth, also discussing philosophy with many of his pupils in a class. The controversial opinions he had led to his own execution, although he did not die shamefully. His legacy thrived after, as the execution actually popularized his name.
"The unexamined life is not worth living."
“Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.”
“Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something.”
“He who cannot be a good follower cannot be a good leader.”
“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a harder battle.”
“I cannot teach anybody anything. I can only make them think”
“When men speak ill of thee, live so that nobody will believe them.”
Plato was one of Socrates's most talented students, also born in Athens. He joined his school when he was around 20 years old, and he became dedicated to philosophy. Philosophies by Socrates are only known because Plato wrote them down; Socrates did not write anything. Many years after Socrates's death, he decided to found his own school, and teach and discuss the philosophies he discovered. This academy was to be used for almost 1000 years after Plato.
Aristotle was Plato's treasured pupil. He left his home in Thales to go to Athens, and there, he attended Plato's Academy. Science and philosophy fascinated Aristotle, although, he later left the school to study biology. During this time, he also tutored Alexander the Great. When Aristotle returned to Athens, he founded a school of his own.