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Transcript of Greece
History of Greece
Greeks are particularly proud of their culture and speak of their country with an intense passion, feeling that the culture in Greece is a definition of their national and ethnic belonging. Traditions, religion, music, language, food and wines are the major composites of the culture.
Name Day Celebration
People in Greece tend to stand or sit close to each other when speaking. It will likely be viewed as an unkind gesture if you move further away. It is also common to greet a friend or someone who you are close to with a kiss on the cheek. When meeting a person for the first time it is important to give a friendly handshake and have a nice, welcoming facial expression. In all situations of greeting and conversing, it is important to keep good eye contact. It is considered very rude to look around while someone is talking to you. Greeks tend to use facial expressions and hand gestures often, as they tend to be very expressive and passionate people. However, there are some gestures, like the thumbs up gesture, that are viewed as an obscene gesture in parts of Greece.
Because Greece is made up of land and islands, its environments vary. Some regions are mountainous, some are islands/ beaches, there is farmland, and cities too. A great example of how the people of Greece interact and live in their environment is on the beautiful island of Santorini. Santorini is essentially what remains after an enormous volcanic eruption, so it is very mountainous. Although there are houses and shops built by humans, Santorini also has "cave houses". People cut right into the mountain and use the mountainous structure as the foundation for their home.
Because of the location and height, it is common for people to ride donkeys to get up the mountain and to travel by small boat. There is also something that is similar to a ski lift to get up and down the mountain.
Important Cultural events/ celebrations
Greece is dominantly Greek Orthodox, 98% of people from Greece follow Eastern Orthodoxy. Greece's most important holiday is also a very Holy one, Easter. According to Greeka.com, "Easter is the most important festival of the Greek Orthodox Church. It starts 7 weeks before Easter Sunday and comes to its peak the Holy Week. This is when Services are held every evening in the churches. On Good Friday, a special celebration takes place when all the flowered tombs of the Christ (named Epitaphios) are gathered at the squares and make the tour of the towns. The peak of the Easter is on Good Saturday at midnight, when pilgrims go the church and get the Holy Light. At midnight exactly, the priest appears holding a lighted torch and shares the Holy Flame on the candles of near worshippers. Then, the worshippers share at their turn the Holy Light with their close neighbours until the entire church and the courtyard get it. It is a beautiful spectacle. Then, fireworks explode in the streets around the Church. Worshippers then bring the burning candles home and make with the black smoke of the candle the sign of a cross above their door. This custom is supposed to bring good fortune upon the house. After midnight, families and friends eat."
Easter is a long celebration that is deep rooted within the Greek culture. It exhibits Greek's value of family and religion well.
List of Greek celebrations
Tourist Sites/ destinations:
Santorini: It is the most populat island in Greece. The vibrant colors of the buildings and the atmosphere and views the higher up the mountain you go are absolutely breath-taking. Ride up the mountain on a donkey and have lunch with a great view of the volcano!
The Parthenon/Acropolis: it was built in 438 BC. It is the largest temple on the Acropolis, and was originally dedicated to the goddess of the city, Athena, later converted to a church and then a mosque.
Mykonos: is a cosmopolitan destination amongst the Greek islands. There is so much to do on this gorgeous island. It has a great nightlife and a lot of activities to do during the day. It's known for it's vibrantly white buildings and amazing beach.
Plaka in Athens: It is the oldest section of Athens and has great restaurants, bars, cafes, museums,galleries, and many shops. It has plenty historical sites too. It is a big hotspot for tourists as well as local people as well, so it is a good place to be.
Greece has a lot of farmland that produces many foods like cheeses, oils, fruits, nuts, grains, legumes, and vegetables. Greece's climate is ideal for growing olive and lemon trees. Olives are a signature food and are deep rooted in the Greek culture, as is oil and hummus. Olive wreath crowns used to be awarded to the winners of the olympics. Olives were seen as what sustained their life and nutrition. And, Greece is made up of many islands, different types of fish are common among Greeks.
In fact, the first cookbook was written by a Greek man maned Archestratos in 330 B.C.
Here is a traditional Kamata olive lemon bread recipe- http://www.lemonandolives.com/kalamata-olive-bread/
Even in America, it isn't uncommon to see someone wearing an "evil eye" bracelet. But, while they are fashionable, a lot of people don't know it's true Greek meaning. The eye symbol itself is called Matiasma, meaning"evil eye" in Greek. It's true meaning is to ward off evil. It is said that if someone receives an "evil eye" from someone else, it is wishing them bad health or luck. So, when you wear an evil eye bracelet or necklace, it is said to fight fire with fire, or an eye for an eye, and redirect the ill intentions back at that person. It is a symbol of protection.
In ancient Greece, only men were allowed to act. So, they made masks that helped each actor play different, and sometimes multiple, roles. It's still a practiced tradition, not only in Greece but other places like America, to make these masks. This typically happens when you are youand learning about theater or if theater is your hobby. These masks usually had a very specific facial expression to help the actor try to get a point across.
Here is how to make them! http://www.ehow.com/how_5955408_make-greek-theater-mask.html
Capital ~ Athens
Language ~ Greek
Population ~ 11.3 million
States ~ 16
Greece achieved independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1830. Prince Otto from Bavaria became the first king of Greece in 1831. Gradually more and more islands got given to Greece.
Greece is a parliamentary system
President ~ Karolos Papoulias
Prime Minister ~ Antonios Samaras
Most Greeks belong to a
Greek Orthodox Church, but there is a small minority of Greek Muslims
Warm and dry summers and mild winters
Greece has mountainous and rocky terrain
Greeks value hospitality, loyalty, glory, and intelligence
Divided into three levels; primary, secondary, and tertiary
Top Exports ~ food & beverages, industrial products, petroleum products, and chemical products
Top Imports ~ machinery, vehicles for transportation, fuel, chemical products, and food