The Parthenon, a temple, located on the Acropolis in Athens, is one of the most representative
symbols of the culture of the ancient Greeks.
is the civilization belonging to the period of Greek history lasting from the
8th to 6th centuries BC to the end of antiquity and beginning of the Early
Greek culture had a powerful influence on the Roman Empire, which carried a
version of it to many parts of the Mediterranean region and Europe.
provided the foundation of Western civilization,
is widely known as the "father of history". Herodotus was succeeded
by authors such as Demosthenes,
Their scope is further limited by a focus on political, military and diplomatic
history, ignoring economic and social history.
the 8th century BC the Greek alphabet was created. From about the 9th
century BC written records begin to appear.
mercantile class rose in the first half of the 7th century, shown by the
introduction of coinage in about 680 BC.
the 6th century BC several cities had emerged as dominant in Greek affairs: Athens, Sparta and Corinth. Each of them had
brought the surrounding rural areas and smaller towns under their control, and Athens and Corinth
had become major maritime and mercantile powers as well.
most of Greek history, education was private, except in Sparta. During the Hellenistic period, some
city-states established public schools. Only wealthy families could afford a
teacher. Boys learned how to read, write and quote literature. They also
learned to sing and play one musical instrument and were trained as athletes
for military service. They studied not for a job but to become an effective
citizen. Girls also learned to read, write and do simple arithmetic so they
could manage the household. They almost never received education after
went to school at the age of seven, or went to the barracks, if they lived in Sparta.
from wealthy families attending the private school lessons were taken care of
by a household slave selected for this task who accompanied the boy during the
day. Classes were held in teachers' private houses and included reading,
writing, mathematics, singing, and playing the lyre and flute. When the boy
became 12 years old the schooling started to include sports such as wrestling,
running, and throwing discus and javelin. In Athens some older youths attended academy for
the finer disciplines such as culture, sciences, music, and the arts. The
schooling ended at age 18, followed by military training in the army usually
for one or two years.
small number of boys continued their education after childhood. The richest
students continued their education by studying with famous teachers. Some of Athens' greatest such
schools included the Lyceum founded by Aristotle and the Platonic Academy founded
Greek society placed considerable emphasis upon literature. Many authors
consider the western literary tradition to have begun with the epic poems The Iliad and The Odyssey, which remain giants in the literary canon for their
skillful and vivid depictions of war and peace, honour and disgrace, love and
entered literature in the dialogues of Plato, who converted the give and take
of Socratic questioning into written form. Aristotle, Plato's student, wrote
dozens of works on many scientific disciplines,
but his greatest contribution to literature was likely his Poetics, which
lays out his understanding of drama, and thereby establishes the first criteria
for literary criticism.
Greek mathematics contributed many important developments to the field of
mathematics, including the basic rules of geometry, the idea of formal
mathematical proof, and discoveries in number theory, mathematical
analysis, applied mathematics, and approached close to establishing the
integral calculus. The discoveries of several Greek mathematicians, including Pythagoras,
are still used in mathematical teaching today.
Greeks developed astronomy, which they treated as a branch of mathematics, to a
highly sophisticated level.
Their ideas are:
Earth rotates around its axis
of the circumference of the Earth
with great accuracy
first measurement of precession
compilation of the first star catalogue
modern system of apparent magnitudes.
device for calculating the movements of planets, dates from about 80 BC,
and was the first ancestor of the astronomical computer
ancient Greeks also made important discoveries in the medical field.
Hippocrates was a physician of the Classical period, and is considered one of
the most outstanding figures in the history of medicine. He is referred to as
the "father of medicine”
art of ancient Greece
has exercised an enormous influence on the culture of many countries from
ancient times until the present, particularly in the areas of sculpture and